Monday Meal Review: New Zealand

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THE SCENE Anthony Bourdain tumbles down a steep sandy embankment on the New Zealand shore, drug down by the weight of his four wheeler. His body twists and flops like a rag doll, swapping places with the four-wheeler in a death-defying dance. He finally manages to leap out of the way, narrowly escaping a bone crushing end by mere seconds.  As the scene replays in slow motion, I white knuckle the couch and hold my breath. One really bad word escapes my lips - consider it a foul-mouthed … [Read more...]

Recipe: Grilled Sweet Potato & Bacon Salad | Kumara

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When I read that New Zealander's love "kumara," I wondered what this dreamy word could mean. When I found out kumara are simply a variety of New Zealand "sweet potatoes," I was thrilled. Sweet potatoes are on my "will-eat-any-time-of-day-for-any-reason-especially-for-my-last-meal" food list. Not many foods make that cut. Today's salad takes inspiration from New Zealand's love of barbecue. For color I combined two kinds of sweet potatoes on the grill before tossing them with bacon, green … [Read more...]

Recipe: Hokey Pokey Ice Cream

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Hokey Pokey, it would seem, is not just a toddler's dance. Down Under, it's a beautiful, fluffy, yet crispy piece of confectionery delight enjoyed from New Zealand to England.  Even Nigella Lawson loves a good nibble of this treat - straight out of a gift box, in the car - from time to time. Traditional recipes use golden syrup, but since I don't have any of that, I used honey which gave the hokey pokey the most incredible,  buzz-worthy flavor and just about turned me into a honey bee. … [Read more...]

Recipe: Pavlova with Summer Berries & Kiwifruit

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Summertime means running barefoot through sprinklers, nibbling fresh fruit, and shining your smile all the time, even when you're sleeping. It means laying your back, watching bubbles of clouds dot through the sky. And today we're eating one such cloud. Pavlova. Named after a Russian ballet dancer, this meringue "cake" takes center stage, topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit, like berries, kiwifruit, mango, or even passionfruit. Both New Zealand and Australia lay claim to inventing this … [Read more...]

Menu: New Zealand

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Here are three food tips I learned from New Zealand, inspired by our thoroughly delicious Global Table. 1. All desserts are 100% better whipped up and inflated, whether done with air or chemical leavening. 2. Everything tastes better grilled. While I didn't think sweet potatoes could rock my world much more, I was wrong. Grill 'em. Just grill 'em. 3.  Don't say you're going to eat a kiwi. A Kiwi is an endangered bird - the national chirper of New Zealand. Kiwi is also a nickname for … [Read more...]

About the food of New Zealand

Beach at Punakaiki, New Zealand. Photo by Ville Miettinen.

With her long line of rugged, scraggly mountains, New Zealand looks like the backbone of the world. Perhaps this is why she was chosen as Middle Earth for the Lord of the Rings trilogy and continues to capture the imagination of people all over the world. If I were a hobbit New Zealand is definitely where I'd choose to live. Even if I were not a hobbit (which I'm not), I'd love to explore this beautiful land. Of course, I might have to wait a few months as it is winter Down Under right now … [Read more...]