Unusual Fact: In Fijian villages, only the chief can wear hats and sunglasses. The top of the head is sacred, and is not meant to be touched.
Bula! Welcome to Fiji, where it never seems to rain and the people are always smiling.
When the British colonised Fiji they brought in a lot of Indian workers to help with the cane plantations. To cater to both of the large demographics, I made an Indian main and Fijian dessert.
This curry has so many spices it could fill a novel. But thats the best part, you get a great diverse flavour. Although the range of flavour is there, it’s not a super special recipe, maybe it was just because it didn’t taste like I thought Fiji would. It’s a good recipe to cook if you’ve run out of ideas for dinner, as (apart from the spices) the ingredients are pretty easy to pull together.
One of the main vegetables of Fiji is cassava, since we can’t get this in Australia I substituted sweet potato. Although, cassava isn’t actually in the recipe, I swapped one of the potatoes for some cassava to make it more relatable to Fiji otherwise it would have just been an Indian recipe.
The curry was served with coconut rice which was surprisingly easy. I thought it was going to burn and have rice stuck every where but actually not much stuck and it tasted pretty good. There is some raita, I was supposed to grate the carrot and the cucumbers but didn’t so our raita was a little crunchier than usual. I do recommend that you have this raita on top because with out it the curry can be a little stodgy.
For dessert we had coconut bread. This recipe is by Fiji Food Safari which I though was a neat little find! This bread has all the coconut flavour you can get going for it, coconut milk and desiccated coconut, it is very rich and sweet so we froze the remaining pieces ready to be put in the sandwich press for whenever we feel like a piece of Fiji.
Angus ‘the rice was ok’
Lentil and Potato Curry recipe from Healthy Life
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
½ tsp turmeric
½ tsp cumin
½ tsp mustard seeds
¼ tsp fenugreek seeds
1 cinnamon stick
4 cloves of garlic, minced
3 small chillies, minced
1 tsp freshly grated ginger
2 tsp curry powder
1 cup dry lentils
2 potatoes, peeled and chopped
salt to taste
1 tomato, chopped
3 cups water
In a medium size pot, heat the olive oil then add the onions, cumin, mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, cinnamon, cloves, and cardamom. Cook over medium heat, stirring for one minute. Add the minced garlic, tumeric, chillies, ginger and curry powder. Stir and cook for another minute. Add the lentils, potatoes, salt and water. Stir and cover. Simmer for 30-40 minutes, until the lentils and potatoes are both tender, adding water if necessary. Add tomatoes and cook for 10 minutes more. Serve with rice.
Raita recipe from Healthy Life
2 cups light sour cream or yogurt
1 cucumber, grated
1 carrot, grated
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 fresh chili, minced
1 tspn cumin seeds, toasted and ground
Salt to taste
Mix all together and serve as a condiment with any curry dish.
COCONUT BREAD recipe by Fiji Food Safari
3 cups Plain flour
1 cup White sugar
1 Tbsp Baking Powder
2 only Eggs
1 tsp Vanilla essence
1.5 cup Coconut milk (freshly squeezed is better!)
1 cup Grated fresh coconut, toasted in oven or dry frypan
1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius
2. Sift flour, baking powder & salt. Fold in the toasted coconut
3. Beat eggs until frothy, add coconut milk and vanilla to combine
4. Make a well in centre of sifted flour, add lolo mixture and fold well but do not beat or over work the mix.
5. Pour mix into a well greased loaf tin and bake for 60 mins. Test with skewer.