If you want to learn how to make authentic food from Australia and New Zealand, join us on Volendam’s Nov. 23, 2013, Great Barrier Reef voyage where television personality and New Zealand Chef Phillip Kraal is scheduled to be onboard as part of the Culinary Arts Center program. This will be Kraal’s fifth cruise with Holland America Line and he’s a guest favorite.
In Chef Kraal’s words: The best way to describe the cuisine of New Zealand may well be by simply saying it’s ‘borrowed’ As a rather isolated nation, New Zealand is influenced by long distance neighbors: the Pacific Islands, Southeast Asia and the Asian continent. We also are very much influenced by our European connections and the United Kingdom.
New Zealand cuisine is a melting pot of many cultures and styles. As a result, chefs from New Zealand tend to be risk takers, who are highly innovative and creative, and very much prepared to try new flavor combination and cooking techniques. Though they are not bound by tradition, they are still influenced and inspired by it.
My view is simply to ‘give it a go’. What’s the worst thing that can happen? If it doesn’t work…..don’t do it again.
COCONUT MANGO MERINGUE PIES
2 Coconuts, cut neatly in half with a hacksaw
Sweet pastry to line 4 half coconut shells
Baking beans or rice for blind baking
1 cup Coconut cream
1 cup Cream
1 Vanilla bean, split lengthwise
½ cup Sugar
3 tbsp Flour
¼ cup Unsalted butter
2 Ripe mangos, peeled and finely diced
6 Egg whites
4 tbsp Caster sugar
Passion fruit sauce for serving
Rub a little oil on the inside of the coconut halves and bake in an oven pre-heated to 170˚C for about 30 minutes. Remove the flesh by scraping the insides with a large spoon. Finely chop and retain the coconut pulp.
Once cool, grease the inside of each shell with a little butter before lining the shell with sweet pastry. Line the pastry with grease proof paper and fill with baking beans or rice to ‘blind bake’ the shells. Bake in an oven pre-heated to 175˚C for 15–20 minutes. Remove the blind-baking material.
Place the coconut cream, cream and vanilla in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. In a large separate mixing bowl, whisk the eggs, sugar and flour until creamy. Pour half the boiling cream over the egg mix while continuing to whisk. Pour the egg mix back into the saucepan with the rest of the cream and cook for a further 4–5 minutes. This is to thicken the cream, but it is very important not to allow the mix to boil again. Keep the cream to about 90˚C (10˚C off boiling point) and stir constantly.
Pour the mixture through a sieve into a large bowl. Add the mango and coconut pulp and mix well. Divide the mixture between the four shells and bake in an oven pre-heated to 180˚C for about 15 minutes.
Whisk the egg whites to a soft peak, adding the caster sugar little by little. Whisk the meringue until it becomes silky and glossy, like shaving foam. Remove the shells from the oven and arrange a good dollop of meringue on each. Return to the oven and bake until golden and crisp-looking. Serve drizzled with a little passion fruit sauce.
ABOUT THE CHEF:
Chef Kraal is one of New Zealand’s most celebrated chefs and owns Bamboozle — an Asian/Euro fusion restaurant and bar. He has worked at The Ritz of London, a Michelin-starred restaurant in Germany and as personal chef to the late King Hussein I of Jordan. He also owned New Zealand’s Le Bon Bolli Restaurants Ltd, a consistent winner of National Restaurant of the Year awards, and worked as executive chef for the 5-star Langham Place Hotel in Beijing, China. Kraal is the author of two bestselling books and has appeared numerous times on television and the radio.
Holland America Line is a proud partner of Food & Wine magazine on the Culinary Arts Center program.