Food & Drink
When Riki Hoeata tried out a peachy barbecue pork ribs recipe on his family, he thought he was on to a winner.
And he was.
Last week Riki was crowned Kiwi Prefab King of the Grill.
Arborio chef and chief judge Steve Rasmassen sorted through the dozen entries into the Puke Ariki competition and declared Riki's sweet 'n' sour pork ribs with spicy peach salsa as greatest for the grill.
Steve's feedback: "It looks very tasty."
The winner says his recipe is an adaptation.
"I got it off the net a while ago, tried it out and changed some things," Riki says. "I tried it out on the family and they seemed to enjoy it."
His family includes brothers Sam and Jarrad, a former All Black.
Riki is also a rugby player, one who also feels at home behind the grill.
"I've not done a lot of cooking - my partner does most of it. My meals are pretty standard generally. But if I get a chance on the barbecue, I'll take it."
His top tip for his winning entry: "It's better if you don't overcook the pork."
Also, if people are using tinned peaches for the salsa, they have to make sure they drain off the syrup.
The 25-year-old says he entered the King of the Grill to win a barbecue - and more.
"I thought it would be quite funny if I go around to barbecues to mention it once or twice," he grins.
Chances are he won't be wearing his royal headgear though. "This might be the first and last time I wear the crown."
The sportsman, who works for Dobsons Marquee and Party Hire in the summer and plays rugby in the winter, has spent the last couple of years turning out for Tasman.
The lock or No 6 says he would prefer to stay in Taranaki.
Before the King of the Grill contest, he didn't have a barbecue, so is delighted to win the Beef Eater Bugg donated by Harvey Norman.
"It's going to be perfect."
Even better is the fact it's in Taranaki colours. Does he thinks this is a good omen? "I hope so."
Not only has Riki shared his favourite recipe to win the crown, the judge for the Kiwi Prefab: Cottage to Cutting Edge exhibition competition has also shared a couple of his best barbecue dishes.
"I don't think I'm happy about giving you these recipes," jokes Steve, sitting on the deck of the iPad bach on Prefab Landing by the foreshore. His two offerings involve marinating meat - lamb and steak.
For the former, he has opted for a fruity mix. "The kiwifruit one I really like because it gets in and softens the lamb. But you have to take it out after four hours otherwise it will cook the lamb."
It is adapted from a recipe he sizzled while working at Cin Cin on Auckland's waterfront. "I also did it in Melbourne at Tribeca. It was on the menu for a season."
It was while living in the Australian city that Steve created the marinade for the Black Angus porterhouse steak.
"It came from what I had in the pantry one day," he says. "I just threw heaps of things together that I thought would work well and it just came together."
The balsamic vinegar helps soften the steak, so once again it's important not to leave it too long - about two hours. When people are ready to throw the steak on the grill, they need to scrape off as much of the marinade as possible.
He uses Black Angus eye fillet in Arborio and has high regard for this steak. "For the price range, it's second to nothing."
Steve also has general cooking advice. "Everyone cooks on their BBQ at full bore. You need to turn it up to start with and then turn it down and have it on a moderate heat."
BBQ Sweet 'n' Sour Ribs
2kg pork spare ribs
410g can peach slices in syrup
3 Tbsp HP sauce
1 Tbsp minced ginger
2 cloves minced garlic
Salt and pepper for seasoning
1/2 cup water
Cut pork spare ribs into 3 rib pieces, set aside.
Place peach slices in syrup, HP sauce, ginger, garlic, salt, pepper and water in a food processor or blender. Process until smooth.
Pour the peach marinade into a large saucepan with the ribs.
Cover and bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer 30-35 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove the ribs from the saucepan and set aside.
Simmer the marinade until reduced and thickened.
Barbecue the cooked ribs over a medium heat for 10-15 minutes, brushing with reduced peach marinade until sticky and golden.
Serve with barbecued vegetables and spicy peach salsa.
Spicy Peach Salsa
1/2 red onion finely chopped
1 tsp minced red chilli
1 Tbsp freshly chopped mint
410g can peach slices in syrup, drained or 4 fresh peaches
3 Tbsp HP sauce
1 Tbsp lemon juice
Roughly chop drained peach slices or fresh peaches (if in season). Place in bowl and combine with red onion, chilli, mint, HP sauce and lemon or lime juice. Mix well and serve with BBQ sweet 'n' sour ribs.
Lamb Rump and Kiwifruit
4 lamb rumps
4 Tbsp or 1 handful of fresh mint
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1/2 cup canola oil
Place kiwifruit, mint, mustard and oil in a blender or food processor and whiz to a fine puree.
Put lamb in a bowl and pour marinade over the meat and leave for four hours.
Place on BBQ flat grill at a moderate heat and cook until medium.
Black Angus Porterhouse Marinade
4 x 200g black angus porterhouse steaks
1 cup olive oil
2 Tbsp of seeded mustard
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp tomato paste
2 Tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
2 Tbsp chopped fresh sage
2 Tbsp chopped fresh thyme
2 Tbsp chopped fresh mint
2 Tbsp kecap manis
2 cloves fresh chopped garlic
2cm piece freshly chopped ginger
1. Mix all with a whisk until combined. Pour on steaks and marinate for two hours.
2. Wipe off excess marinade (as it will burn), then chargrill on a moderate heat until done to liking.
- © Fairfax NZ News