Maori Food
Knowledge Sharing
Maara Kai Presentations, Workshops, Seminars, Public Displays, Promotions and just good old plain whanau gatherings and get togethers sharing knowledge about our traditional Maori Food History how it once was the main stay of the day 

Umu Kohupara Marumaru

Food items placed in Flax Baskets called Tipoti, Tapora, Whena or Rourou lined with feral herbs and spices then matched with meats, birds, fish, eels and other native  animals. Other baskets would be lined with native broad wide leaves like Rangiora or Puka for the potatoes, Sweet potato, pumpkin, native greens, with more delicate items for cooking these would be wrapped in soft ferns then heavier ferns like fresh water fish, seafood, shellfish, prawns, seasoning or stuffings, steamed puddings then carefully secured with flax ...  

Marae Kai Masters

Demonstration putting everything together as explained above on Marae Kai Masters TV show April 13, 2016 

Please find attached for you a Maara Kai presentation I demonstrated on the Marae Kai Masters program on National TV  to ​give you an idea of my work. Photo's below I show  samples of our Umu Kohupara meals
Presenter - Joe McLeod
Tohunga Tumau - Executive Chef
Maara Kai Scholar - Creative Culinary Artist utilizing Rongoa - Raranga - Whatu - Whakairo - to present Traditional Maori  Food
  Maori Food  
Day One (Part one)

  • Karakia, whakapapa, tikana part 1  
  • Introduction to traditional Maori food
  • Traditional food foraging & preparation
  • Linking the plants to the food whakapapa  
  • Preparing food for our Umu Marumaru
  • Different ways to present food on the Marae
  • Setting the scene for an Umu experience
  • Being a good host part 1
  • Karakia Whakamutunga day 1

Day Two (Part two) 

  • Karakia, whakapapa, tikana part 2 
  • Cooking the Umu Marumaru
  • Traditional Hakari Master Class 
  • Traditional Maara Kai Master Class
  • Contemporary Maara Kai Master Class
  • Being a Good Host part 2
  • Sharing the Umu Marumaru
  • Open Q & A time - clean up
  • Karakia whakamutunga day 2

I attended a branch meeting in Wellington and while there, the highlight of my visit was a Traditional Culinary Experience about Maori Food being presented by Chef member Joe McLeod. Joe opened a window which was totally new to most of us about Maori food in a way only Joe could deliver. Truly amazing, those unique flavors, brilliant - New Zealand Chefs Association President Graham Hawks
What an experience, I don't know anyone who knows what to get to cook a Maori kai anymore. My mum knew but she never taught us how. When I saw what Joe was picking I only knew those things as weeds but when they were cooked in the Umu and presented in a typical Maori way. Wow - Justine Hake
I first met Joe at a CD meeting, I introduced myself, invited Joe to our venue, Joe introduced to us traditional Maori Kai. A new Strand for our 20 year replanting project was setup, the rest is now history and the program speaks for itself, there is no other like it taught anywhere in New Zealand - Bill Rawiri - Nga Hau E Wha O Papararangi Marae 
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Tino pai tenei wananga, kahore he tangata i runga ake i a koe ki te whakahaere tenei taketake Maara kai.   we would love to have you and your ropu come to our marae to present this kaupapa. Your knowledge was priceless and your delivery, can't speak highly enough - Linda Pahi, Orongomai Marae
Absolutely amazing and wonderful what you shared and demonstrated to us today. Ae we would really like to learn more. Tino pai o mahi ki te tunu Maara Umu marumaru mo matou. Your knowledge and delivery awesome
 Tatau O Te Po Marae
The maara kai presentation you did for Us was amazing. Thank you bro for an awesome presentation, there were a few of us who, before you started were skeptical as, soon as you started putting everything together in te Reo and English, sharing your stories, and you  opened that umu bro, awesome - Mervyn Kerehoma - Orakei Marae, Auckland  
Ae, pai te rongo ki nga korero me nga tikana e pa ana ki te maara kai. I would be very interested to attend another one of these workshop presentations. Ka tino whakae ahau ki tenei kaupapa mo tatou nei rangatahi, Iwi Maori hoki - Shanna Butler 
I was absolutely blown away and very impressed. It was an honor and a privilege bearing witness to the presentation Joe gave at a wananga I attended. Watching the Umu being put together was educational, entertaining, and very well done, the food was cooked brilliantly, for those amazing flavors and aroma's, wow. - Te Mahaki Horomona 
Tino rawe o mahi Joe, ka nui nga mihi kia koe me to whanau o Te Kakano me te Marae o Nga Hau E Wha o Papararangi. Me haramai koe ki to tatau Marae kia kite ai nga ringawera me tatau hoki nga kaumatua ki o mahi tuturu - Muri Luke - Waiwhetu Marae, Lower Hutt 
This Maara Kai Kaupapa was Unique   and a pleasure to attend. I learned more at this kaupapa about Maori tikana, karakia, whakapapa and wairuatanga for Maori Kai for the first time that was properly explained and the presenter was professional, experienced, passionate and very well versed  - Thomas Reisinger - Te Horo/Levin
Tino marama ki te korerotanga  a me tera hoki kua tino marama ki te ngako o te kaupapa. He kaupapa nui tenei mo nga  whanau e haiahia ana ki te whai mohio ki te kato kai, te tunu kai me tera ki te tunu kai pai hei aronga mo te tinana. Kua tautokotia au ki tenei kauapa    - Rev Hariata Haumate - Te Kakano Marae 
Very inspiring, the Maori Food history, display table, loaded with medicine plants, books, teaching aides, tools, talking pieces and ornaments from NZs past used by Maori of old and the early settlers. The presentation was delivered by an expert in this field and I want to acknowledge that - Chef John Economo - Thailand  
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Two Day Wananga Four Times a Year

Experience Our Unique Maara Kai Workshop & Presentation
History (Whakapapa) - Tradition (Tikana) - Knowledge (Matauranga) All Explained

Two Days of Traditional Maori Food Cooked the Old Way With a Twist
Practicing an Old Art Form, Rich in Culture, Rich in Heritage, Rich in Prestige    

Presenting Our Maara Kai Tunu Outreach Presentation, Boot-Camp and Workshop
Taken to the Marae, Your Venue, T​o Introduce the Maara Umu Kohupara or Umu Marumaru​​

We were fortunate enough to grow up in an area and in an era where all around us and the marae, the place was full of traditional talent and skilled practitioners and masters of the old school. Our language Te Reo Maori was the talk of the time all day every day and the skills they handed down. Our work is a tribute to them, they taught us, to love nature, live by nature and be thankful for Gods Creation in karakia, tikanatanga, whakapapa, wairuatanga, manaakitanga, matauranga and Aroha....   Executive Chef Joe McLeod    

(Home of the Umu Marumaru Maara Kai Program)
Nga Hau E Wha O Papararangi Marae

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Preparing rourou baskets to cook in an Umu Kohupara Marumaru for a live Wild Food Challenge presentation at Raetihi 2018. Foraged for leaves, ferns & flaxes, wild herbs and spices to prepare the food, making fresh rourou baskets that morning...