(Photo Attributed to Author: Malcolm Jacobson)
New Zealanders are often referred to (by themselves as well as others) as “Kiwis”. And this New Zealand Kiwi Hāngi meal is as old and traditional to the Kiwi people as is the length of time human beings have lived there.
This majestic and stunningly beautiful island was the last large mainland to be inhabited by humans. In fact, there were no mammals at all until the first people arrived. Prior to that, New Zealand was dominated by birds.
Polynesians first landed on New Zealand and began to settle there around 700 A.D., and before the end of the 8th century, the British had arrived. England came to terms with the Polynesians, and colonized New Zealand as a British property – granting the “native” Polynesian full British citizenship rights.
We have just started a new page started here on Ethnic Foods R Us, devoted to Kiwi Cuisine. Click here to go to it. The page is being loaded with lots of recipes that have evolved over the centuries. Foods that naturally reflect the cultural preferences of the Polynesians and the British, and that have blended into a cuisine that is unique and original.
Hāngi (Photo Attributed to Author: Einalem)
One of the most unique traditional meals prepared there is this New Zealand Kiwi Hāngi (pronounced: “han-jee”). Attributed mostly to the Polynesians, who are lovers of foods cooked over open fires, the Hāngi is very similar to the American rustic camping meal called the “Hobo Dinner”. For a read on how to make a Hobo Dinner, check our post on Gourmet Open Fire Cooking.
But let’s now get right into how to prepare this real, authentic and traditional meal that is a national favorite to the Kiwi people, okay?
How to Prepare a New Zealand Kiwi Hāngi