Cookery holidays in Mauritius and the Maldives

Food has always been an integral part of a holiday, a chance to literally immerse yourself in the flavours of a new country.

Sample the Mauritian cuisnine on offer at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Sample the Mauritian cuisnine on offer at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Cookery holidays

Cookery holidays, on which you spend a few days in a Tuscan villa or French farmhouse slaving over a stove to master the intricacies of their cuisine have become increasingly popular.

But what if you actually want a bit of holiday in your holiday, or you want to know how to cook something a bit more exotic than a Quiche Lorraine?

For those who are interested in broadening their culinary horizon with the warm heat of exotic spices but still want time to lie on an idyllic beach, a cooking class in the restaurant of a 5* Indian Ocean hotel could offer the perfect solution.

Learn to cook in Mauritius or Maldives

At Constance Le Prince Maurice and Constance Belle Mare Plage in Mauritius and Constance Halaveli in the Maldives, our chefs offer the opportunity to learn directly from them.

In morning classes – available to book just a day ahead – you will discover the key ingredients and spices that make up the core of the region’s cuisine, and how to delicately combine them to create some of the sumptuous dishes you’ll enjoy in our restaurants.

Fine dining at The Deer Hunter

Fine dining at The Deer Hunter

Le Prince Maurice

Discover the secrets of Mauritian cuisine with the hotel’s Chef Pravin, Chef Ah Youne and Chef Boucher.

Some of the dishes you may learn to cook include:

  • Mauritian cuisine – Guests will learn to cook Creole style fish salad and vegetable samoussa
  • Pastry – Guests will learn to make coconut and pineapple macaroons with Chef Boucher
  • Asian cuisine – Guest will learn to prepare sushi and Chinese shrimps sumai

Belle Mare Plage

Learn about the traditions of Mauritian cuisine in the kitchens of the Deer Hunter restaurant or Blue Penny Café with classes run by Chef Frederic Goisset and Chef Patrick Travady.

Included in the two hour class will be a 15 minute session with the head sommelier who will explain how to pair the perfect wine with the food you are learning to prepare.

Some of the dishes you may learn to cook include:

  • Learn to cook steamed prawns with kaffir lime, pineapple with spicy salt, tapioca and coconut milk at The Deer Hunter
  • Spice Experience – Learn to cook chicken with garam masala and discover the secret of cooking with local spices
Exquisite asian cuisine on offer at Constance Halaveli

Exquisite asian cuisine on offer at Constance Halaveli

Halaveli

The food of the Maldives is an intoxicating blend of flavours from across Asia and Africa so it’s no surprise that the classes on offer cover cuisines from around the region – we’ve even got a French pastry chef to teach desserts.

Some of the dishes you may learn to cook include:

  • Maldivian tuna curry, steamed rice, chapatti and papadum or Mugh Makani (Indian chicken curry), Kashmiri palau and papadum taught by Sous Chef Hammed Siddiq
  • Indonesian chicken satay with peanut sauce, lontong and achar or red Thai beef curry and fragrant rice, taught by Chef Handhi Wijaya
  • Lemongrass infused crème or croustade vanilla poached pear taught by pastry chef Pascal Galette
  • Private one-to-one classes are available on request as are learning to prepare special ingredients such as lobster, caviar and Wagyu beef.

Find out more and book now

Recipe: Mauritian style fish curry

One of the most popular dishes at Constance Le Prince Maurice, this fish curry is the perfect meal for sharing with friends.

Laguna Bar, Constance Le Prince Maurice

Laguna Bar, Constance Le Prince Maurice

Ingredients (Serves 4)

Fish curry:

  • 600 g white flesh fish ready to cook, and cut in cubes
  • 60 g Onions
  • 10 g Chopped Garlic
  • 10 g Chopped Ginger
  • 25 g Chopped Coriander
  • 10 g Thyme
  • 5 g Curry leaves
  • 200 g Diced Tomato
  • 35 g Curry powder ( best quality you can find)
  • 6 g Turmeric powder
  • 5 g Red chilli powder (optional)
  • 10 g Cumin powder
  • 10 g Coriander powder
  • 100ml of fish stock ( or water)
  • 50 ml Coconut milk
  • 50 ml oil
  • Salt and pepper

1. In a large pan, pour little oil. When it’s hot put the onions, garlic, ginger and the herbs cook for 5 minutes.

2. When the onion turn lightly brown in colour add the spices and simmer for 5 more minutes. Add diced tomato and cook on low heat for 5 more minutes. Add coconut milk and fish stock. Reduced to a nice consistency.

3. When you are ready to serve, eat up the curry sauce, add the fish and cook for 2 minutes. Switch off the fire, cover and allow resting for 10 to 15minutes (until the fish is cooked).

4. Add fresh chopped coriander. Serve hot with plain rice, lentils fricassee, tomato chutney, cucumber salad and any pickles from the supermarket.

Tomato Chutney:

  • 100 g fine-diced tomatoes
  • 20 g fine chopped coriander
  • 40 g fine chopped onion
  • 10 g Soya bean oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

1. Mix all the above mentioned ingredients, season and serve.

Plain white rice:

  • 200 g Basmati rice
  • 500 g water
  • 4 g salt

1. In a pot boil the water; add some salt and the rice. Cook for around 15 minutes, strain in a colander and serve hot.

Cucumber salad:

  • 200 g cucumber
  • 20 g sliced onions
  • 5 ml white vinegar
  • 5 ml oil
  • Salt and pepper

1. Peel and slice the cucumber, mix with the sliced onions. Season with the other ingredients.

The India Post reviews Constance Le Prince Maurice

The India Post celebrates the Indian influences they discovered in the authentic Mauritian cuisine served in the restaurants of the 5* Constance Le Prince Maurice in a recent review.

Archipel, Constance Le Prince Maurice

Archipel, Constance Le Prince Maurice

Preeti Verma Lal claimed that the sumptuous vegetable samosas, halwa and dholl puri at Archipel restaurant and the homemade braised chilli balls with eggplant, basmati rice and parantha at La Barchois restaurant made her feel right at home.

‘Everything is oh so Indian but with a Mauritian twist,’ Verma Lal describes.

The reviewer says she felt a similar warm sense of familiarity at the luxurious Spa de Constance where she enjoyed the Prince Ayurvedic treatments.

The Eastern influences continued with the fitness guru and personal trainer at Le Prince Maurice, Isabelle Lamant who taught Vinyasa Yoga.

But it was the friendliness of the staff at Le Prince Maurice which Verma Lal claimed made her feel most at home.

Read more

 

Recipe: How to make Mauritian curry paste

Mixing curry spices in to a curry paste is a complex task which must be handled properly if it is to release the maximum of subtle flavours. The local Mauritian grandmothers, our “grandmas“, used to crush these spices on a rock with the help of a stone rolling pin. Along and painful practice, this ancient skill was passed down from mother to daughter.

Making a Mauritian curry paste

Making a Mauritian curry paste

Ingredients (serves 4)

The spice mixture for the curry paste:

  • 24g coriander seeds
  • 18g cumin seeds
  • 12g cardamom capsules
  • 6g black peppercorns
  • 9g fennel seeds
  • 9g mustard seeds
  • 3g cloves
  • 1g dried chilli without seeds
  • 12g green saffron (fresh turmeric), root soaked overnight in water (keep the water)
  • 150g onions
  • 30g garlic
  • 15g curry leaves
  • 30g fresh ginger

1. Peel and wash the herbs and roots, the onion and garlic.

2. Roast all the spices separately (except the green saffron and the dried chilli) in a non-stick pan over a low heat for less than a minute. (You need to be very attentive to the colouration and to the aroma that is released during the roasting.)

3. Put the ingredients into a blender with the minced onion, the garlic, the ginger and the chopped curry leaves, and the crushed green saffron. Mix it together with 250ml of the water used to soak the green saffron until you get a smooth even paste.

4. Take the mixture, cover it with a film of soybean oil and keep it in the fridge.

The curry sauce:

  • 150g onions
  • 60g ginger
  • 120g garlic
  • 300g tomatoes
  • 60g coriander leaves
  • 15g curry leaves
  • 50ml cooking oil

1. Wash and peel all ingredients.

2. Finely chop the onions and coriander separately, put them aside. then chop the garlic and ginger, again, putting them to the side.

3. Cut a tomato into small diced pieces, after removing the stem.

4. Brown the onions in oil, add the garlic paste and ginger. Cook it so it forms a compote.

5. Stir in the mixture of spices, cubed tomatoes and chopped herbs. Simmer for another ten minutes, stirring regularly with a spatula. You will get your base for any curry sauce that you may need for future dishes.

Sommelier’s suggested wine

Oxidative white wine:

  • Côtes-du-Jura, Vin jaune, Domaine André et Mireille Tissot, 2004 France
  • Côtes-du-Jura, Tradition du Château d’Arlay, 2004 France

Culinary Festival Bernard Loiseau 2014

The Culinary Festival Bernard Loiseau, held at Constance Belle Mare Plage, Mauritius, is a highlight of the international gastronomic calendar. Next year, the festival will celebrate its 9th year, taking place from 29 March to 6 April.

Bernard Loiseau Culinary Festival at Constance Hotels & Resorts

Bernard Loiseau Culinary Festival at Constance Hotels & Resorts

The festival pairs European Michelin-starred chefs with the best island cooks from across the Constance group in a week long competition.

The festival promotes an open sharing of ideas and culinary inspiration and techniques between the acclaimed chefs and their island counterparts.

Using only fresh local produce, sourced by the teams at the vibrant Mauritian market in Port Louis, each team must come up with an exciting, creative menu. This menu is then prepared by the island chefs on the final day and judged by a panel of leading culinary professionals.

The festival, a partnership between Constance Hotels & Resorts and the Relais Bernard Loiseau, was launched in 2006 to commemorate the chef Bernard Loiseau.

Guests at Belle Mare Plage and Le Prince Maurice during the festival can look forward to a week of sumptuous meals prepared by the visiting chefs, demonstrations and a celebratory awards dinner.

Read more

Recipe: “Henan’ Omby Ritra”

This “Henan’ Omby Ritra” dish is a classic one from Madagascar’s culinary heritage, and normally contains zebu. This delicious version is served only on special order for our guests. Ask any of our chefs at Constance Tsarabanjina for it & they will put all their love and passion into preparing it.

"Henan' Omby Ritra"

“Henan’ Omby Ritra”

Ingredients

The meat:

  • 1.5kg zebu (rump, chuck or cheek). May be replaced by beef
  • 2g black pepper
  • 10g garlic
  • 10g ginger
  • 1 onion
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 red pepper
  • Peanut oil
  • 200g sealing dough (200g flour and 100ml water)
  • Salt/pepper

1. Brown the meat in oil in a casserole for 5 minutes with the chopped onion, crushed garlic, salt chopped tomatoes and ginger slices. Cover it with 0.5 litres of water and cook it for 15 minutes.

2. When the water has completely evaporated, let the meat brown before cooking it in the tomato sauce. Pour in 3 cups of water. Add the chopped pepper and cracked black pepper. Cover and finish it in the oven and let everything cool. Keep the compote of pepper confit.

3. Once the meat is completely cool, put it into another cast iron pot, add the remaining sauce, cover it with the lid and add a strip of sealing dough to ensure the whole thing is hermetically sealed and any evaporation is reduced to a minimum.

The garnish:

  • 200g black Chinese rice (Venere)
  • 20g butter
  • 1 onion
  • 4 potatoes
  • 100g spring onions
  • 500ml chicken stock
  • Olive oil
  • Salt/pepper

1. Cook the potatoes in boiling water. Peel them and mash them with a fork, adding the olive oil and the chopped onion tails. salt it and set it aside.

2. Sweat the chopped onion in butter. Stir in the black rice until it goes white and cook it like risotto, adding the chicken stock as you go along until it is soft.

Finishing and presentation

Bake the sealed casserole in a hot oven at 160/170˚C for 10 to 15 minutes.

Remove it from the oven and, using a small pairing knife, open the lid of the pot in front of the guests. Be careful not to burn yourself!

Accompany everything with the mashed potatoes and black rice. Serve the pepper compote with a spoon.

Sommelier’s suggested wine

Strong fruity red wine:

  • Saint-Emilion Grand Cru, Château Monbousquet, 2008 France
  • Vin de Pays des Bouches-du-Rhône, Domaine de Trévallon, 2008 France