Pikopiko cooked to perfection exactly how I like it, dripping with "wai kutae", mussel stock. With aroma's similar to asparagus scented with a strong New Zealand native forest flavour, this native vegetable is prized at a high level in the kitchens of the Marae and home. Now marketed as a fiddlehead vegetable in restaurants across New Zealand, it has earnt its rightful place amongst our mainstream vegetables. ka pai tera.
Foods are covered with native herbs and spices steamed under cover with ferns then covered with sacking to hold everything in place whilst the food cooks. Unlike the hangi that's used traditionaly to cook food, a strong smokey flavour is eminent. Using this method, the difference is noticed straight away. The Maori people knew how the herbs behaved during cooking and adjusted their recipes accordingly. This method of cooking was put aside for almost 200 years until now.