Saturday, 29 June 2013

Kumara Bravas for Matariki

Here's a kumara dish for Matariki. Kumara have been grown in Aotearoa for a very long time. It is thought that they were first brought here by early Maori settlers from  the Pacific over a thousand years ago.  

My Kumara Bravas recipe was inspired by Patatas Bravas , a classic Spanish tapa dish which is served in bars all over Spain. Bravas means fierce . In this recipe the bite isn't too fierce.It comes from the hot chilli sauce.

Matariki, the Maori harvest festival invites us to celebrate and share. So  put the kumara bravas on  a big platter . Pass it round with some toothpicks so everyone can dip in and enjoy.

If you haven't used smoked paprika before start with a little, it's an acquired taste but I think it really makes this dish special. 


400 grams of  peeled Kumara (cut into wedges)
1 tablespoon of coconut oil
2 tablespoons of vegetable/olive oil
1 400 gram can of diced tomatoes in tomato juice
1 medium size onion (chopped)
1 clove of garlic (crushed)
1 teaspoon of paprika
1/2- 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika ( optional)
1 teaspoon of palm sugar (crushed)
a dash of hot chilli sauce (I used Hot Samoan Boys Chilli Sauce)
salt to taste

Parsley or coriander finely chopped


Chop the kumara into chunky pieces. Toss with a tablespoon of coconut oil and bake in a 200 degree C oven for about 20 minutes until they are crisp and golden brown. They may need a little longer.

While they are baking prepare the sauce.

Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable/olive oil in a frying pan and fry the onion for about 5 minutes until it has softened.
Add the crushed garlic and fry for a further minute.
Add the remainder of the ingredients.
Simmer for about 10 minutes stirring the tomatoes and mashing them with the back of a fork from time to time. The sauce should be pulpy and will have reduced.
Arrange the kumara wedges on a platter.
Drizzle some of the hot sauce over the top.
Garnish with the chopped parsley/coriander

( If you don't have coconut oil, vegetable oil will do although it won't be as aromatic. Palm sugar does add a warm, caramel flavour but it can be replaced by sugar. )

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