Taranaki’s iwi hotel celebrates Maori New Year with star-inspired menu


Haukai Bistro & Bar's chef, Vickram Zacharia, is passionate about cooking and proud of the menu his team has created to mark Puanga in Taranaki.

VANESSA LAURIE / Stuff

Haukai Bistro & Bar’s chef, Vickram Zacharia, is passionate about cooking and proud of the menu his team has created to mark Puanga in Taranaki.

A special menu to mark the Maori New Year is served at Taranaki, but what’s on the plate is more than just a chance to fill your stomach.

For two weeks starting June 20, a three-course menu called Te Whakanui ia Puanga, will be offered at Haukai Bistro & Bar in Novotel Ngāmotu.

The hotel has been jointly owned by Parininihi ki Waitōtara, Te Atiawa Iwi Holdings and Taranaki Iwi Holdings since 2018.

Haukai’s head chef, Vickram Zacharia, said the menu is part of a larger mission to provide customers with an experience that goes beyond food.

“We want to represent who we are”

READ MORE:
* Matariki: Maori New Year Celebration in 2022
* Matariki in Auckland: A month of festivities across the city
* “Gorgeous” Maori New Year celebrations at the biggest Parihaka Puanga event to date

One of the starter options on the special edition of the Puanga menu is free-range pork belly and watercress ravioli in a boiled broth.

VANESSA LAURIE / Stuff

One of the starter options on the special edition of the Puanga menu is free-range pork belly and watercress ravioli in a boiled broth.

He said Taranaki celebrated Puanga for several weeks, instead of Matariki, which for the first time will be recognized as a public holiday on June 24.

The menu he devised was a nod to the role played by the kai in celestial celebration.

“Puanga itself is more about harvesting and food, and storing food for the long nights, the winter.”

He said food was a way of bringing people together and caring for them, known to Maori as manaakitanga, or hospitality.

Te Wharekura o Arowhenua tumuaki tuarua (Deputy Principal) Tiahuia Kawe-Small shows us how to find the Matariki cluster in the southern sky.

This value has also motivated Haukai staff, while providing a “showcase” for local products.

Traditional Maori ingredients and flavors have been infused into the set menu, which costs $69 per person.

For example, entree options are free-range pork belly and watercress ravioli in a boiling broth or smoked eel on rewena toast.

Zacharia said the themes of earth, water and fire were used as the basis for constructing the menu, which offers two choices for each course – starter, main course and dessert.

An assortment of flavors helped inspire an elaborate menu to celebrate Puanga in Taranaki.

VANESSA LAURIE / Stuff

An assortment of flavors helped inspire an elaborate menu to celebrate Puanga in Taranaki.

The 32-year-old, from India, said he grew up celebrating the New Year in his native country through the practice of harvesting and food.

“It was easy and fascinating for me to make connections.”

The restaurant was already generating a lot of interest from potential diners regarding Puanga’s menu, including large groups “which shows that people are coming together to celebrate,” he said.


Source link

Previous 20 Old Fashioned Pie Recipes To Make This Weekend - Eat This Not That
Next Charcuterie and more offered by new businesses | Local News