Maldivian food festival at Amilla celebrates sustainable Local Cuisine
World Food Day on October 16th was marked at Amilla Maldives Resort and Residences with a Maldivian Food Festival showcasing 50 delicious menu items in homage to the 50 years of tourism celebrations in 2022.
The cuisine was freshly prepared by chefs from the neighbouring island community of Kendhoo, an island in Baa Atoll renowned for its cuisine. Amilla Maldives Resort’s Commis Chef, Naf (who is one of just a handful of female Maldivian chefs working at a resort in the tropical archipelago) took great pride in coordinating the event and introducing guests to such a wide array of authentic dishes. Each dish was made from locally-grown seasonal ingredients as well as sustainable pole and line-caught fish.
Menu highlights included a light ‘boashi satani’ (banana blossom salad), as well as popular Maldivian classics such as the velvety smooth ‘mas riha’ (fish curry) and a hearty ‘kukulhu riha’ (chicken curry) with red rice and roshi (thin flatbread). There was also a wide range of ‘hedika’ (Maldivian tapas, commonly featuring tuna and coconut as the main ingredients).
As a standalone Maldivian-owned resort, Amilla Maldives frequently celebrates its roots by hosting local artists, performers and other special guests from the South Asian island nation. Maldivian cuisine and ingredients regularly feature on the breakfast menu and once a week at Maldivian theme nights, but the local cuisine has never been showcased before on this scale. Guests were invited to make a donation for attending the resort’s inaugural Maldivian Food Festival, with profits going towards supporting the local island community. Amilla Resort also donated 50 bicycles to Kendhoo to reduce the need for petrol-powered motorbikes. Another environmental boost came in the form of coral planting. Amilla’s Marine Biologist went to Kendhoo to demonstrate to local children how to help regenerate reefs with coral propagation techniques.
The coral planting project was organised in partnership with the Biosphere Reserve Office, Baa Council, Amilla Maldives, Four Seasons Resort and Soneva Fushi Resort. One coral frame was planted for every school in Baa Atoll – 13 in total.
The Maldivian Food Festival is a key event in Amilla Maldives Resort’s 2022 calendar of events celebrating the 50th anniversary of the beginning of tourism in the Maldives. The coral planting event was also a significant part of the celebrations. Following hot on its heels is a series of pop-up events organised by renowned British restauranteur and owner of JÖRO, Luke French. Luke, who is inspired by locally grown and foraged produce, will treat guests to two gala dinners with a focus on farm-to-table and ‘eating lifestyle’ dishes, as well as two cooking masterclasses.
Luke’s residency at Amilla also coincides with the resort’s Festival of Life celebrations which include Halloween, Thanksgiving, Diwali and more. Pandora Christie from Heart FM in the UK will be at Amilla to show off her DJ skills as well as host an event in aid of the Maldives Cat Charity. Her colleague, Tom Green, will join Pandora on the decks on Halloween, as well as host a ‘Dangerous Dinners event during his stay’. For more information click here.