Another Milestone In Cuisine Post-Creole
Fijian chief Ratu Filimoni Nawawabalavu joined the villagers of Nubutautau last month in a weeping apology to 11 Australian descendants of a British missionary killed and eaten by the Ni Nubutautau 140 years ago ,after a perceived slight to the sacred person of the Ratu's Great-great great great grandfather.
Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase and members of Fiji's Great Council of Chiefs attended a feast and a complex ritual reconciliation ritual known as ai sorotabu intended to lift the curse on the isolated village arising from the unfortunate Victorian's demise.
After a cow was slaughtered, in an expiatory exercise in cannibalism once removed, the late reverend Thomas Baker's relatives were kissed by the Ratu, whose predecessor as chief was the chef who boiled the Reverend Baker, together with the local vegetable Bele --Hibiscus manihot-- also known as slippery cabbage, and his leather boots, which Nubutautau villagers had unsuccessfully tried to eat raw after Baker and eight Fijian followers were clubbed to death on a cliff in nearby Navatusila.
At the ceremonies conclusion the Baker descendants, who were earlier presented with 100 rare and tapu sperm whale teeth as compensation, were given the missionary's bible, comb and the soles of his boots, which still inedible despite 1.2 million hours of sporadic cooking attempts, will be displayed in a museum in Suva.
As of this writing, Nubutautau has no Guide Michellin entry.