In the last week of March, Fisher & Paykel along with Alt Group presented the Social Kitchen (part II) at the 2012 Urbis Design Day. Our curiosity about the food journey and the role the kitchen plays in everyday life was the inspiration for our experience. The project was a combined effort across our Auckland and Dunedin product design teams.
Guests were greeted with a glass of wine and were given a tea towel in preparation for their hands-on involvement in hunting, gathering, cooking, and sharing four tastes that the Our Kitchen team had designed for the occasion.
The first taste was a Bluff Oyster, flown in from the Deep South that morning. Guests were able to choose their own from the tank and have it shucked and dressed right in front of them. Next up guests were given a cube of Angus rib eye to sear on an impressive 6m long gas cooktop, before being finished with a marinated mushroom, caper aioli and crispy onions. Yum! The next taste was a cleansing shaved ice with peach, sour cherry or passionfruit syrup. To finish guests were treated to a handmade passionfruit and mandarin or licorice and five spice cookie to dip in perfectly molten chocolate.
As a product evaluator I found it really interesting interacting with people and learning so much about the different habits people have in their own kitchens! We ended up with a few leftover oysters so I decided to make some Beef and Bluff Oyster Pies – much to the delight of many of the crew here in Dunedin. This is a wonderful way to make just a few of these delicacies satisfy many mouths. The flavours go so well together and the oystery ‘taste of the sea’ makes it very special.