Thursday, August 23, 2012

Moa Samoa - Polynesian Brown Sugar Chicken

Here's another recipe from Me'a Kai's Samoan section. I've been wanting to do more with this book than just reading it and slobbering over the pictures so I've been marking (with the three pretty coloured ribbons attached to the book) recipes that I want to make.

I was easily seduced by the photo in the book of a succulent, glazed chicken leg, and thought, 'Yum! That's dinner.'

My plan of action was simple. See, my chicken was already defrosted and I had two hours before dinner time. I figured it would take me mere minutes to throw together the marinade, the chicken would soak in it while I got the coals going, then, like the domestic goddess I am, I'd throw the marinated pieces on the grill - baste and turn them with one hand while making a garden and potato salad with the other hand - and Voila! Bon appetit!

In an ideal world, that would have happened. 

In my world, I realised halfway through mixing the marinade that I needed limes and star anise, so I had to run down to the store. Returned with said ingredients, finished mixing, threw the chicken in, then decided, belatedly, to refer to the book for the minimum marinading time. 

3 hours.


And up to 2 days.


And forget about the coals. There's too much sugar in the marinade, so the chicken would burn before it cooked.

I sighed heavily, stomach rumbling. Guess it's the old alaisa (rice) and elegi (tinned fish) tonight. Again.

So I learned my lesson, a lesson that I learn every couple of weeks actually: Read the recipe.

Put all the marinade ingredients together in a bowl and mix. Divide the marinade in half.

Put half the marinade in a pot and reduce to a third. In other words, simmer until two thirds of it is gone. The remainder should be thicker and darker than the original.

Strain the reduced marinade and set aside until needed. This may be three hours later, or two days later, depending on how long you leave the chicken. The other half of the marinade is what you leave the chicken in.

Bake the chicken until done, basting frequently. Brush with the reserved glaze.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Joe Lam wins NZ Food and Beverage Challenge 2012

"The dish of deer meat served with taufolo cakes and a twist of koko Samoa was among the country’s finest dishes."

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Fancy Sapasui

This recipe comes from the Samoan section of Me'a Kai. I think the ingredients are flexible so I made substitutes here and there, but try to use lobster meat or prawns as the recipe suggests because it really makes for a light but flavourful sapasui.

Prepare your vegetables using whatever is local and in season. Ginger and garlic are essential.
Quickly saute the ginger and garlic. Add the lobster or prawns and fry until the seafood is cooked.
Add your presoaked lialia and seasonings.
Finally add the vegetables and mix well to combine.


Thursday, August 2, 2012

Moa Feleiva i le Mago - Mango Chicken

Sometimes simple is best. 

This recipe by Tepora Porter and Quini Luau was a finalist in a Healthy and Tasty Samoan Recipe Competition and even though it didn't win, I love its simplicity. You can access the original recipe here (page 22), or you can just follow along with me... Samoan.


Moa Feleiva i le Mago
(serves 4-6)

500 kalama alaga moa sae le pa'u, tipitipi
Falaoa mata e nini ai fasimoa
Tama'i 'ini o le masima ma le pepa
2 mago
Tama'i 'ini o le pauta polo feu
1 sipuni 'ai suau'u
Sua o se tipolo meamata (po'o se tipolo)

Palu faatasi le falaoa mata, pepa ma le masima. Faatofu moa i le paluga.

Salu sina suau'u la'ititi i se apa falai. Tu'u iai fasimoa ma kuka. (The original recipe has some business about putting baking paper on oil in the frypan, but that's too finicky for me.)

Taisi se mago mai luga i lalo. Tipi leisi mago, palu faamalu, faaopoopo iai le sua o le tipolo meamata ma se 'ini o le polo feu. 

Tu'u fasimoa ua vela i le faapaluga mago mo nai minute. 

Laulau ae tu'u ai le mago taisi i luga. 

The sweet mango really complements the chicken. However, I squeezed in a lot more lemon juice than the recipe called for and also increased the chilli powder. Sweet, sour and spicy. What more could you want?

Again, check out the original recipe for instructions in English and more Samoan-inspired healthy dishes.