|Not a member? Sign up now!|
Kiwi gourmands at Taste of Auckland lined up in droves last weekend to sample signature Malaysian dishes courtesy of the newly-launched Malaysia Kitchen Programme (MKP).
Taste of Auckland is an annual event that features a selection of Auckland’s finest restaurants, each serving signature dishes.
The Malaysia Kitchen Programme made Taste of Auckland its first event to tickle the taste buds of New Zealanders and introduce Malaysian classic favourites such as satay, char kuey teow and roti canai.
If the long queues of hungry diners lining up to experience tasty and spicy dishes were anything to go by, the year long programme is set to be a huge success in New Zealand.
The Malaysia Kitchen Pavilion featured eight of the city’s top Malaysian restaurants: Sri Puteri’s, Santhiya’s, Taste of Malaysia, My Stop Malaysian Cuisine, Sri Mahkota, Kampung Delights, KK Restaurant and Angie’s Kitchen.
Included among the VIPs were Malaysian Trade Commissioner Mr Yew Chee Ong, Malaysian High Commissioner to New Zealand Dato' Hasnuddin Hamzah, and Australia’s Masterchef finalist Adam Liaw.
Sampling dishes at Taste of Auckland were appropriately accompanied by live cooking demos from Australian Masterchef finalist Adam Liaw and President of the NZ Guild of Food Writers Lauraine Jacobs.
The chef’s kitchen was supported by regular cultural performances by Sydney Malaysian dance troupe, Rentak and Teh Tarik pulling – the art of ‘pulling’ traditional Malaysian tea that creates a deliciously creamy and foamy tea (sweetened with condensed milk).
The Malaysia Kitchen Programme is a year-long campaign to promote Malaysian restaurants and cuisine. It features a series of exciting epicurean activities and events in 2010 and 2011 to “engage and delight the taste buds”.
Malaysian cuisine is a fascinating blend of Malay, Chinese and Indian food traditions with Thai, Portuguese and Middle Eastern influences.
The spectrum of gastronomic influences gives Malaysian cuisine a rich diversity, drawing on many tantalizing herbs and spices such as lemongrass, nutmeg, basil, and chilli.
Auckland alone has 23 Malaysian restaurants and Wellington 19.The Malaysia Kitchen Programme has been implemented in major markets such as the United Kingdom and New York. And the rest of NZ can look forward to a similar taste experience with the news that MKP has appointed a leading public relations firm to carry its messages nationwide.
Auckland-based Pead PR has been tasked with the job of helping to bring the rich diversity and heritage of Malaysian cuisine to Kiwi taste buds - from authentic traditional delicacies to complex gourmet fusions of subtle flavours and rich spices.
For more information on the Malaysia Kitchen Programme, please visit www.malaysiakitchen.my
About Adam Liaw
Adam Liaw (born 8 September 1978) is an Australian lawyer and television chef. He was one the finalists of the second series of MasterChef Australia.
He may be a young prodigy, having completed Year 11 at just 14-years-old, enrolled in university at age 16 and a lawyer at 21. When growing up in Adelaide, there seemed little doubt that Adam’s world would eventually centre around cooking.
Adam’s mum and stepfather moved to New Zealand when he was 14-years-old, but he stayed in Adelaide where he lived at his grandma’s home. He lists her as a food inspiration, but it wasn’t until he was studying science and law at the University of Adelaide that it became a passion.
He moved to Japan six years ago, where his love affair with food has blossomed. And after forging a successful career as a lawyer, Adam has handed down his verdict on his culinary future: he wants to open his own Japanese Izakaya, which is like a pub with a casual restaurant.
“If you can turn your hobby into your job, why not?” says Adam, who didn’t watch last year’s series of MasterChef and was told to apply by his mates. “I’ve just left my job in Japan and I know that if something was to come from being on the show, I would move back to Australia.”
Adam even has his own blog where he details recipes as well as taking professional looking shots of the finished product.
About Lauraine Jacobs
Lauraine Jacobs, current President of the NZ Guild of Food Writers, is an internationally respected food and wine writer and author of several cookbooks and one travel book, Matakana.
Trained at the London Cordon Bleu School she has been writing on all matters culinary for more than 20 years, starting as food editor of Fashion Quarterly in the late '80s, and served as food editor for Cuisine magazine until 2009.
Her bestselling cook book, The Confident Cook, is a much loved and used book in many New Zealand homes. The New Zealand Vegetable Cookbook, her latest book, co-authored with Ginny Grant and Kathy Paterson, was released in mid August.
A passionate cook and lover of simply presented fresh food, she has won many food and recipe writing awards including two Gold Ladles at the World Food Media Awards. She wrote in Cuisine magazine for 22 years until late 2009 and won prizes for her recipes, restaurant reviews and travel stories.