This weekend's Taste of Auckland Festival prompts NZ On Screen's Nicky Harrop to revisit some classic Kiwi food shows.
Food shows have been a staple of the New Zealand television diet since our very first broadcasts. In that time, we've witnessed the rise of the homegrown celebrity chef, and some serious changes in our tastes towards local cuisine.
The Graham Kerr Show
"Galloping Gourmet" Graham Kerr first graced New Zealand screens in 1960, just months after television first arrived in the country. Appearing as an Air Force catering adviser marked the beginning of a career that would see him become an internationally pioneering TV chef, liberally mixing personality - a patient, slightly naughty uncle, always ready with a risqué quip - and butter, cream or wine-soaked recipes. In this 1966 clip, he abandons his usual show format to answer queries from a studio audience. Topics covered include how to stop scrambled eggs drying out (add cream), battering oysters (never) and when to make Christmas cake (at least six months in advance - whoops).
See an excerpt from The Graham Kerr Show here:
Hudson and Halls
The 1970s saw the arrival of Hudson and Halls, a celebrity chef couple offering a scrumptiously camp mixture of cooking and comedy. Ruling the ratings for a decade, before heading to the UK, the pair remain firm Kiwi pop culture favourites. In the past two years, a run of Hudson and Halls tribute plays have seen sell-out attendances throughout the country.
Watch an episode of Hudson and Halls here:
Alison Holst Cooks - Bread and Cheese
By the 1980s, another culinary queen had also been firmly crowned. Dame Alison Holst began her TV chef career in the mid 60s, going on to appear in countless shows, and sell millions of cookbooks. In this 1984 clip from Alison Holst Cooks she celebrates the delights of bread and cheese, whipping up a carb-tastic spread of mouse traps, cheese rolls, mini pizzas and, of course, cheese toasties.
Watch Alison Holst Cooks - Bread and Cheese here:
Real Food for Real People with Jo Seagar
The 1990s saw the screen debut of Jo Seagar, with Real Food for Real People. Promising to "take the angst out of entertaining", Seagar offered a smorgasbord of shortcuts, tricks and tips. Gems from this episode include doubling up on pastry trays, and being stingy with the caviar ("If you use a whole lot they don't think it's real").
Watch Real Food for Real People with Jo Seagar here:
Hunger for the Wild
Launched in 2006, Hunger for the Wild took chefs Al Brown and Steve Logan out of their Wellington fine dining restaurant and into the wilds of rural New Zealand; fishing, foraging and hunting their way through a culinary adventure. Putting the local in "locally sourced", each episode involved the pair splitting up and collecting ingredients (and characters) for a shared meal. This episode finds them whitebaiting on the West Coast.
Watch Hunger for the Wild here:
Kai Time on the Road
One of Māori Television's longest running series, Kai Time on the Road has traversed the length and breadth of New Zealand, celebrating foods from the land, rivers and sea. Delivering a winning combination of kai and kōrero, the show is into its 12th season. In this 2012 episode, chef Pete Peeti heads to Rakiura/Stewart Island to sample some local king salmon.
Watch Kai Time on the Road here:
You can see more classic Kiwi food shows here, in NZ On Screen's Spotlight collection.