Maori MasterChef sisters filming travel show in Dublin today

Maori sisters Karena and Kasey Te Awa Bird cook Irish food at L Mulligan Grocer

Karena and Kasey Te Awa Bird, New Zealand MasterChef winners, filming their food and travel show in Dublin on Tuesday

Karena and Kasey Te Awa Bird, New Zealand MasterChef winners, filming their food and travel show in Dublin on Tuesday

 

Karena and Kasey Te Awa Bird, joint-winners of MasterChef New Zealand 2014, are filming in Dublin today for the new series of their food and travel TV show, Karena and Kasey's Foreign Flavours.

The Maori sisters, who are from the Bay of Plenty town of Maketu in the North Island, were victorious in the fifth series of the cooking show in New Zealand, and have since published two cookbooks. It was the first time the show’s New Zealand franchise was based on pairs of contestants, similar to the Australian My Kitchen Rules series.

They have since travelled the world’s food capitals for their TV shows, using cooking as a medium to explore cultures and peoples. Their show, which is broadcast on national TV in New Zealand, has an audience of 250,000 viewers.

Food champions

In Dublin today and tomorrow,  they will meet four of Fáilte Ireland’s Food Champions – Garrett Fitzgerald of Brother Hubbard cafes, Pádraic Óg Gallagher of the Boxty House, Niall Sabongi of Klaw, and Seáneen Sullivan of L Mulligan Grocer, where they will be rolling up their sleeves and doing some cooking and learning about nose-to-tail eating as Sullivan introduces them to the pub's famous Scotch Eggs.

Their Irish itinerary also includes filming with Ciaran Sweeney, head chef at Forest & Marcy and visiting Kitchen in the Castle, the cookery school in Howth. They will also travel north, to visit Portballintrae.

Before taking part in MasterChef New Zealand, Kasey (26) was studying accountancy and Karena (27) was a quality control co-ordinator. Their first food and travel series, Kitchen Diplomacy, filmed over six months last year, took them to Korea, Italy, Vietnam, India, the US, Japan, Chile, New Caledonia, China and Indonesia, where they made 10 episodes.

In the series currently being filmed, they visit the Middle East, Greece, Peru and Hawaii as well as Ireland. Their Irish itinerary was arranged by Fáilte Ireland in association with Tourism Ireland.

Creative hubs

Ciara Sugrue, head of international publicity for Fáilte Ireland, said: “We believe that Dublin’s new wave of creative hubs, bars, foodie hotspots, microbreweries and art spaces spread right along the city and coastline generates a new atmosphere for visitors.

“Fáilte Ireland is delighted to be actively highlighting our food offering in Dublin to Karena and Kasey and to New Zealand viewers in the hope that visitors and food lovers will get to sample what Dublin’s landscape and coastal seascape food and produce has to offer when they arrive here.

“Fáilte Ireland’s research shows that just over one third of overseas visitor expenditure in Ireland is spent on food and drink, equating to €2 billion. Ireland’s reputation is fast growing as a world class destination for food lovers. Teams of creative and talented chefs and a new generation of small scale artisan producers are the driving force behind this food revolution.”

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