New Zealand is known around the world for its beautiful landscape, friendly people and fantastic holiday destinations for adrenaline junkies. Yet it also happens to be home to outstanding native cuisine.
Whether they are exquisite dishes that have been inspired by Maori culture or from immigrants overseas putting their own spin on these flavours, this is an underrated corner of the world for travellers who want a taste of this amazing food.
Seafood lovers should look no further than the isles of New Zealand for world-class dishes that hit all of the right notes. The most notable will be available at any seafood restaurant on the North or South Island. This will include Pāua, Whitebait, Crayfish, Bluff Oysters, Mt Cook Salmon and Kina among many others.
There is New Zealand cuisine that can be cooked at home and enjoyed as a snack, or the high-end meals that even world-renowned chefs like Gordon Ramsay champion. The television host would venture down the South Island for his National Geographic series Gordon Ramsay: Unchartered where he would connection with Wellington local Monique Fiso.
The focus of the program would be the incredible Maori food that was on show for the Hells Kitchen star, giving him the challenge for cooking for a set of locals. A number of ingredients would be cooked over the Hangi (earth oven) that featured Pāua, wood ear fungus, kawakawa leaves, sweet purple fuchsia berries, peppery horopito and asparagus-tasting Pirita – all sourced from the natural surrounds of the local area.
For those tourists who are watching what they eat or want to exercise portion control, then they are well served trying out the Southland cheese rolls. This is a staple of New Zealand cuisine that can be enjoyed in cafés, restaurants or even made at home with the inclusion of some fun ingredients. By adding onion soup with onion, colby cheese, parmesan cheese, butter, cream, milk and two loaves of bread, the cooking process can be executed easily for a delicious snack.
Hangi remains a leading item for anyone interested in New Zealand cuisine as a meal choice. The earth oven is used again to slow cook this vegetable and meat combination. Maori culture would use this technique for thousands of years, but it is just as easily applicable in domestic kitchens thanks to the advents of the slow cooker.
The Australians might have attempted to make the Kiwi Pavlova their own, but it is a dessert staple that remains a proud member of the New Zealand cuisine family. By mixing fruit with meringue and whipped cream, this is a cake of choice for those that want a lighter and healthier alternative to the traditional birthday cake.
For those tourists who don’t quite find ice cream by itself enticing enough, they can try some good old-fashioned hokey pokey. It is a delicacy that also goes by the name honeycomb, offering a small taste of New Zealand cuisine that features sugar, golden syrup and butter, adding a crunchy texture to a bowl of ice cream.
Tourists will regularly find themselves on the go and when this is the case, it is important to get a taste for something that is wholesome and feeds those taste buds. The Kiwi Burger has therefore become a signature item for those checking out New Zealand cuisine in all its glory. Although there are many similarities with regular hamburgers, this menu item will include a fried egg and beetroot within the bread to accentuate those sumptuous flavours inside.
World travellers are already spoiled for choice when they venture down to New Zealand, but the food selection will take this trip to a whole new level!