Fijian food is a perfect blend of spicy dishes that are introduced through Indians along with the ingredients that are incorporated by the Fijian people. Traditional Fijian recipes are still following the use of old cultures and styles of cooking, but with the changing times this cuisine has undergone many changes.
The Fijian people are highly talented in cooking and they make good use of ingredients and local foods to cater the needs of their large families. The most popular Fijian feast is ‘Lovo’, which is specially prepared in an open ground for a large group of people during any festival or funeral in their society.
The most striking feature of the Fijian food is that it is traditionally cooked with conventional equipments and Fijian ladies use the spices without measuring them. Some of the most popular Fijian recipes are spiced dhal soup, kokoda and cassava cake.
Historical and Cultural Influences on Fijian Recipes
The influence of Indian cuisine is evident on the Fijian food. There are many Indian living in the Fiji who introduced some of their most popular and commonly used spices and ingredients to the cuisine of Fiji.
The basic knowledge of Fijians regarding food and its nutritional value is very low. Even few people are not aware of the ailments and diseases associated with the food. This has influenced a lot on their eating habits and diets.
Ingredients Commonly used in Fijian Recipes
The local markets of Fiji are loaded with fresh fruits and vegetables that are generally used to make Fijian food. Fish is the staple food of Fiji and local women catch the fresh fish from the sea everyday. Main vegetables include cucumber, cassava, tomatoes and eggplants. Root vegetables are also very popular in Fijian food.
Fijians are very fond of sugar and sweet products and this is the reason that most of the people are over weight. Coconut and starchy foods such as rice and wheat are highly used to make Fijian recipes. Spicy curries are a result of extensive use of chilies. Curry leaves and coriander are the addition to the taste of the spicy curries.
Villagers in Fiji are very self-sufficient as they grow fruits on where own for example bananas, passion fruit and oranges. They used these fruits to make some of their exotic desserts.
Traditional Fijian Recipes
Fijian Food Eating Etiquettes
Fijian food is traditionally eaten with hands. Family members and even guests in Fiji are supposed to eat all the curries and rice dishes with hands.
Health Benefits of Fijian Recipes
Fijian food is healthy as it involves lots of home cooking. Variety of vegetables and fruits are used to make the food tasty as well as healthy. Sometimes, the excess use of starchy and sugary foods makes the recipes quite calorific.