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Chef Story

The kitchen at the Wakaya Club and Spa is an extensión of our chef´s soul. Head Chef Marielle Hajj has received numerous awards and accolades through the years and has worked along many of the worlds best chefs in NYC and Paris.

Yet, what makes her cuisine so unique is simply put, the  passion she puts to the whole process. For Marielle, cooking is a deeply rooted desire that ignites from the core of her soul. Her Lebanese and Mexican background sprout strong and passionate feelings that mix with exciting flavors,  Fijian customs and the freshest ingredients, to create one of the world´s best dining experiences.

A team of up and coming Fijian chefs work side by side to create unique and beautiful dishes in order surprise the most discerning palates. Think of some of the worlds best freshly harvested  ingredients combined with generations of diverse and passionate cooking!

We are happy to cater to any dietary needs, please inquire.

Ocean To Table

Wakaya is home to one of the most impressive Marine Protected Areas. These specially designated areas have been chosen by the government as areas where commercial fishing is forbidden, yet local sustainable fishing is encouraged.

We practice conscious fishing aimed at a combination of protecting  and regenerating the coral reef and marine species, as well as providing a diverse menú of fish and shellfish for our guests.

Farm to Table

Farming is a way of life in Fiji and Wakaya is no exception. We proudly cook what the island grows. Fijians believe that anything that is naturally grown is essential for a long and healthy life. Similarly, we believe that there is no better tasting ingredients than those which come straight from Wakaya’s naturally nutrient rich soil.

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Venues

Wakaya offers a variety of options for enjoying your meals. Guests can choose from our flagship restaurant, The Palm Grove, our intimate beach house, Baravi Lai Lai, a beach cookout, or dining poolside.

Additionally, we are happy to provide more exclusive and private options such as a picnic on one of our private beaches, or in your own suite. If you have a special event we welcome any opportunity to make it memorable.

Recipe

Wakaya Virgin Coconut Oil

TOTAL TIME: 2 Days

PREP TIME: 4 hours

SET TIME: 48 hours

You will need
– Mature Coconuts (3 coconuts makes just over 1/2 cup solid oil)
– Coconut scraper or high speed blender
– A tea towel
– One large bowl and 2 medium size bowls

– Cleaver to crack coconut in half for grating or hammer
– Small Sharp knife

– A vegetable peeler
– 1 cup of water for each coconut

– A deep pot

– Cheesecloth
– Sieve
– Ladle
– Mesh strainer
– Empty sterilised glass jar to store your oil in

Instructions

  • Begin by removing the water from your coconuts.
  • Once the water has been collected from all the coconuts, it’s time to crack open the shell. Use the cleaver to crack coconut in half.
  • Now you need to extract the flesh from the shell. Use a coconut scraper and scrape the white flesh of the coconut in a large bowl. Do not grate right to the bottom of the shell.
  • Add water to the scraped coconut bowl. Using your hands, we need to squeeze the coconut flakes and water together, until the mixture looks very white and creamy. Continue mixing and squeezing for about 30 times.
  • We need the cheesecloth, sieve and two bowls. Place a sieve on the larger bowl, and then the cheesecloth on top. We need to ladle the coconut liquid mixture on to the cheesecloth, and squeeze to extract the liquid from the coconut. Once the liquid has been extracted, we empty the coconut flakes into our other bowl. Repeat this process until all the liquid is one bowl and the coconut flakes are in another bowl.
  • We no longer require the coconut flakes; you can use it to make coconut flour. You can compost it too; it is highly nutritious for your soil.
  • Now we are left with just the liquid which we extracted from the coconut flakes. Cover this with some cling film.
  • Leave the covered bowl in a cool environment, with room temperature is below 70F or 21C, leave to stand at for 24 hours. Then put it in the fridge for three hours to overnight to solidify.
  • After it has been in the fridge, there will be a layer of solid white mass at the top. We need to carefully extract this from the remaining liquid.
  • You can use a mesh strainer to separate the solid oil from the liquid.
  • Place the solid oil in a deep pot and cook at a low heat for about 30 – 45 minutes. Use the ladle to stir now and then. (Do not scrape the bottom of the pan that has coconut residue).
  • After cooking let the oil cool down and strain using cheese cloth again to strain any leftover particles from the solid oil into a clean sterilized bottle.
  • There! Now you have your very own virgin coconut oil.
You will be greeted by laughter and singing the minute you arrive at the resort, and throughout your stay, you will be warmly and uniquely cared for by our team.

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