Kawakawa [macropiper excelsum] is also called bush basil which has peppery flavour. It's pretty much similar with Indonesian herb which is called cabe jawa [piper retrofractum vahl] used for making jamu (traditional herbal drink).
This jamu is a mixture of either leafy or root herbs and other ingredients which should be taken as alternative medicine to some certain diseases for some people. My late grandmother used to drink jamu when she wasn't feeling well and actually her body responded really well to herbal drink rather than chemical medicine (without giving bad credit on medicine, on the record). She came from Mojokerto, Central Java where people very much drink it as a habit. Up to present, herbal drinks are still consumed although not so many people can be seen selling bottles of jamu carried in their back, going from home to home like I used to see when I was a child. These days we can drink jamu out of bags like we're drinking a cup of tea.
When Emma of Laughing Gastronome sent me little bags of NZ wildcrafted herbs on NZBBP event, I was very excited to see some herbs I am familiar with, not only because Indonesia has similar herb as kawakawa, but also I have seen it growing on our hill. Growing wildly and undisturbed. When I went down the hill yesterday, I still could see many seedlings are still growing not far from their mother shrubs. Like I said everything is growing in NZ!
So anyone wants a seedling or two, put your gumboots on, go to the back of the hill and help yourself!
Steak Rubbed with Bush Basil
4 sirloin steak, trimmed all the fat,
2 cloves garlic, crushed,
1 Tbs bush basil,