NZ Chefs Auckland president Jasbir Kaur is helping put New Zealand cuisine on the map, teaching budding chefs across America and Canada how to inject Kiwi flavour into their dishes.
“It is a real honour to be showcasing New Zealand’s unique cooking styles and ingredients on the global stage,” said Kaur, who is also general manager of Ignite Colleges, home of Auckland’s newest and most innovative cookery training programmes. This week Kaur heads to Miami, Seattle, San Francisco and Vancouver, where she will represent New Zealand at leading international culinary arts schools, delivering Kiwi-inspired cooking demonstrations to the world’s future chefs.
Along with a large dose of Kiwi flavour (including horopito and pikopiko), Kaur plans to add a Spanish twist to her demonstration dishes. Both are cuisines she is highly passionate about after working at Barcelona’s Michelin-starred Disfrutar and representing New Zealand at the World Tapas competition in Valladolid two years ago. Last year Ignite Colleges hosted the first ever Australasian Tapas competition, which saw the winner compete at the World Tapas event in Spain under Kaur’s expert guidance.
”I am very excited about sharing my expertise with chefs in the USA and Canada. I hope this will sow the seeds for them to learn more about Kiwi cuisine, and one day come down here to explore all our amazing country has to offer.”
Amongst the schools Kaur will be visiting during the two-week tour are the Miami Culinary Institute, the Seattle Culinary Academy, San Francisco Cooking School (SFCS), and the Canadian Food and Wine Institute. While there, she will wow students with innovative dishes such as seabass cooked in manuka salt with olive and seaweed tapenade, infused with pikopiko, pickled tapioca pearls and cauliflower and horopito custard.
“This dish combines cooking techniques I learned at Disfrutar with New Zealand ingredients that many overseas chefs will not be familiar with. They might think it is a bit unusual, but I am sure they are going to love it!”
Kaur – who will also be judging a culinary competition in Miami – hopes the tour will open up opportunities for American and Canadian chefs to visit New Zealand to deliver their own master classes and cooking demonstrations to Ignite Colleges’ Level 3, 4 and 5 students.
“At Ignite Colleges we deliver world-class cookery training that prepares chefs not only for careers in New Zealand, but also to succeed on the global stage. Connecting with chefs around the world is a great way to promote our national cuisine offshore and help New Zealand’s future chefs gain the international exposure they need to succeed.”