Come and join us for our Waimarino event on the central plateau, a beautiful volcanic region in New Zealand’s north island! The event starts from 3pm on 7th February at Heartlanz Motor Inn in Raetihi.
Raetihi, the town hosting us, is the gateway to the famous Whanganui river, rich in both Maori and European history, and so I was keen to explore the region in December.
Before leaving home, I went for a dive and harvested some goodies to take with me as a wee Koha (gift/donation) from the south. Teaming up with my good mate Roo, we headed north, into what the Waimarino locals term – the Heartland. With a planned meeting with the Mayor and the organizing committee at 7pm, we planned to get there a bit earlier and go for an afternoon hunt with local hunter Jason Haetana. Jason is well known for his skills as a fine hunter and gatherer. Within an hour of being in the hills with Jason, we had bagged a spiker fallow deer, and we saw a huge mob of red deer, including four big stags.
Back at the hotel, we found that the locals had dropped off packages of beautiful wild foods including hare, eel, venison, trout, herbs, flowers, rabbit and cress. Our Koha included moki and paua adding to the list of primo NZ ingredients. With a bit of base prep done, we headed for the main street to set up BBQs, hot plate, smoker and work benches. What a great turnout of enthusiastic locals! As we worked, explaining to the crowd what each preparation was, we handed out big platters of wild food goodies including: ‘Crudo of moki’ with wild flower and herbs Venison carpaccio with wild rocket and truffle Seared hare backstrap, garden salsa verde Smoked local rrout and wild cress Smoked eel with smoked paprika aioli Rabbit with rosemary and garlic Venison rump steak, syrah and ohakune carrots Sliced paua steaks, lemons, sea salt and homemade mayo Every dish was demolished, with big smiles and heaps of questions regarding their upcoming Local Wild Food Challenge. I was so happy to see the level of enthusiasm so high.
So, come and join us! Team up, get out there with the kids, hunt, fish, forage… check out the Local Wild Food Challenge Facebook page for ideas from previous LWFC around the globe at www.facebook.com/localwildfoodchallenge. Your dish can be anything with at least one wild ingredient: frozen, fermented, liquid, savoury or sweet…. the options are endless!
Register now! Simply send us an email at: firstname.lastname@example.org with your intent to enter. You can also register on the day at the event. Entry forms will be provided at the venue.