New Caledonian Cuisine

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New Caledonia- Cooking and Food

Overview of New Caledonian Cuisine History

New Caledonian cuisine felt over the time the influence of various other cuisine of the local communities. But besides that one thing is sure the New Caledonian cuisine has mainly French influences. During the time, the preparation methods of a traditional New Caledonian meal adjusted to many cuisine. The Malanesian migrants brought with them numerous recipes and dishes some of them like “Bougna” stil being cooked today. At the begining of the colonization of the country many types of migrants came on this lands bringing along traditions and of course their cuisine. People from Tahiti showed to the Caledonian’s how to cook their traditional “Tamara’a”. The Indonesian also contributed to this cusine by introducing the Caledonian people to a new dish called “Bami”. Also the Japonese brought in this country the dish called “Sashimi”. Such a large variety of cooking has mixed in a New Caledonian cuisine and all the communities in this country are peacefully sharing it.

Cuisines of New Caledonia

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Map of New Caledonia- Click to enlarge

New Caledonia cuisine integrates mostly French influences and preparation methods. Still, French cuisine is not the only one who had the chance of developing in this country. Indonesian and Vietnamiese way of cooking mix perfectly with the traditional New Caledonian cuisine. Cooking in this country implies integrating in various recipe methods and components from many different cuisine such as the Melanesian, Pulynesia, Japanese, Reunion, North Africa, Caraibean and even from Australia. Bringin in many different nationalies, New Caledonia is a representant of all kind of cuisine. One can always try the local specialties that offer the opportunity of tasting an exquisite meal made with all kind of special ingredients. Here are just few of the ingredients that people from this country use for preparation of unique dishes: fruit bat, escargot, Crayfish, venison, tropical fruits, coconut milk, fish and many more. Food is prepared in many different ways some of them brought in this country by the migrants. Either the food is being braised like the Malaesian people do, steamed in an Asian way, or rawed in the Tahitian manner the taste and the flavors are fascinating to ones senses.

Preparation Methods for New Caledonian Cooking

Finding yourself ready to cook a traditional New Caledonian meal you will be surprised by the various methods and approaches existing in this country’s culture. What is specific for this country is the high number of elements used to prepare dishes that are taken from various cooking traditions, elements that have been borrowed from their neighbors and adapted to the traditional New Caledonia cuisine. While there are no specific or unique preparation methods for New Caledonia cooking, we should point out that attention to detail is important in the New Caledonia cuisine. Using the right amount of spices for example is essential – either for spicing up the taste or for coloring the dish. The diversity of vegetables and cereals found in New Caledonia is also noticed in the delicious dishes belonging to their cuisine. The visual attractiveness of the dish is also important, and a balance between colors and proportion differentiates. Each traditional dish has a special cooking method, which is more or less general in all of New Caledonia’s regions. Meat is one of the main elements of most New Caledonia dishes and cured and smoked hams are often parts of delicious dishes.

Special Equipment for New Caledonian Cooking

Anyone who wants to prepare a studgy New Caledonian meal must have in the kitchen several specific cooking tools in order to make the cooking process easier. Ranging from cake pans, can openers, colanders, egg rings, poachers and holders, food dishers & portioners, food pans & food containers to other kitchen utensils, such as food scales, food scoops and fryer baskets & accessories, the New Caledonia cuisine needs a diverse cooking equipment set in order to produce the most sophisticated New Caledonia dishes. You should consider insulated food carriers if you are transporting the food and a full set of kitchen linens and uniforms if you wish to look like a pro. Here are a few other items that will come handy while cooking New Caledonia food: juicers, kitchen knives, kitchen slicers, kitchen thermometers, measuring cups & measuring spoons, miscellaneous utensils, mixing bowls and skimmers & strainers. Essential utensils like serving spoons, spatulas, forks, turners, scrapers and tongs should also be part of your cooking "arsenal".

New Caledonian Food Traditions and Festivals

The Islands of New Caledonia are located in the Pacific Ocean and are ruled by the French. Manly the food traditions and festivals here are those celebrated in France. Some of the public holidays held here by all the people no matter of their origins are: New Year’s Day, Labor Day, Whit Monday, Armistice Day, Ascension Day, Easter and of course Christmas. All these holidays are celebrated with a lot of pomp and of course with special dishes. One of the most important festival in New Caledonia is the Festival of yam and generally is held in the month of March. During this festival special dishes are served like the dish called “Civet de Roussette” a bat stew with a delicious taste. On the 14th of July everyone in New Caledonia celebrates Bastille Day. During this celebration French dishes and traditional New Caledonians dishes are cooked.

People in New Caledonian Food

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New Caledonia cuisine is a mix of cultures and influences. People all over the world are astonished by the local chefs' dexterity of combining so many ingredients with different origins into such creative and delicious dishes. There are many chefs who creatively use the basic ingredients and cooking method for traditional New Caledonia dishes and create original and delicious food variations. New Caledonia chefs are passionate about their traditional dishes and they enjoy presenting them to foreigners who have never tasted them before. Whether they are cooking dishes that go back in time for centuries or brand new, modern dishes, New Caledonia chefs take pride in what they do, and this is readily noticeable in the unforgettable taste of their cooking.