Au­then­tic tastes from around world

Central Leader - - NEWS - By ROSE CAW­LEY

Di­ver­sity is be­ing dished up on a plate in one of Auck­land’s most mul­ti­cul­tural ar­eas.

Eater­ies in Mt Roskill, Hills­bor­ough and Lynfield are cel­e­brat­ing the melt­ing pot of cuisines on of­fer with Taste of Puke­ta­papa.

Peo­ple can test their taste buds on ev­ery­thing from In­dian to Malaysian, to a clas­sic serv­ing of fish’n’chips.

Ev­ery par­tic­i­pat­ing out­let is of­fer­ing a spe­cial dish at $12 or less for the fes­ti­val.

Now in its third year, the fes­ti­val runs from May 7 to 21 and a record num­ber of 37 es­tab­lish­ments are tak­ing part this time.

Owner and founder of Kati Grill Jaspreet Kaur came on board be­cause of ‘‘Auck­lan­ders’ love of food’’.

‘‘You have to cel­e­brate that,’’ she says.

‘‘There are a lot of food­ies here, a love for what you eat and so much on of­fer.

‘‘Eth­nic food is a grow­ing mar­ket.

‘‘We have ev­ery­one come in here – Asians, Euro­peans and In­di­ans.’’

The 29-year-old never imag­ined she would end up in the food in­dus­try.

‘‘My bach­e­lor’s de­gree is in in­te­rior de­sign,’’ the Mt Roskill res­i­dent says.

But when she mar­ried her hus­band and moved to New Zealand al­most seven years ago the ‘‘huge foodie’’ was shocked at what In­dian cui­sine was on of­fer.

‘‘I was re­ally ashamed, we just get cur­ries here and some of them aren’t even au­then­tic.

‘‘When most peo­ple think In­dian food, they think curry and when you say: ‘No curry’ they look at you like you are crazy,’’ Kaur says.

‘‘That is the im­age I wanted to change,’’ she says.

Kaur con­vinced her hus­band that a mix­ture of Kolkata-in­spired wraps filled with North In­dian cui­sine would be a hit and the cou­ple ran with the idea.

When her daugh­ter was just 7 months old Kaur opened the first shop on Karanga­hape Rd and now she has just launched a sec­ond shop in Mt Roskill.

‘‘I started in a very naive way, I thought: ‘This is the food I like to eat, other peo­ple will love it’. I had this gut feel­ing.

‘‘I think you have to eat with your heart and peo­ple here do.’’

The event is or­gan­ised by the Puke­ta­papa Lo­cal Board. Pick up a Taste pass­port from any one of the par­tic­i­pat­ing out­lets.

Photo: ROSE CAW­LEY

Jaspreet Kaur, 29, moved to a new coun­try, had a baby and started a busi­ness all within a few years. Kati Grill is one of the eater­ies cel­e­brat­ing the dif­fer­ent cuisines on of­fer with the Taste of Puke­ta­papa food fes­ti­val.

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