to bite – ngau(-a)
A man pulls up a pile of food from a hangi, and starts to gnaw on a meaty bone.
to eat – kai(-nga)
A man dressed as a king sits down in front of a hangi and starts eating the food there.
to chew – ngaungau(-a)
Watching through a pair of binoculars, a policeman sees a teenage girl put a piece of gum in her mouth and start chewing. The policeman picks up his radio and shouts “Now! Now!” as if orchestrating a hostage rescue.
bitter – pūkawa
A cow takes a bite of a flower and its facial expression shows intense bitterness; then it defecates. The bitter taste caused a poo cow.
sweet – reka
On a pile of junked cars and vans at a wrecker‘s yard, a young boy sits and eats sweets, ice-creams and chocolates.
to feed – kainga
Two boys are playing checkers. One moves a piece to the far side and says “King me!” His opponent picks up the board and feeds it to him.
Flavour – tāwara
A teenage boy walks up to a teetering tower made of salami. He takes a bite out of it, and then says “This tower is tower-flavoured.”
Food – kai
A woman walks into a grocery store to buy some food. Instead of regular food, the shelves are full of keys of all descriptions.
fresh – mata
A matador walks up to a table full of food. Under his breath, he mutters “Fresh? Is this food fresh? Fresh enough?”
hunger/hungry – hiakai
Hercules sit does in front of a meal with a rumbling stomach. He tucks into the food in a way that shows a striking level of hunger.
taste – rongo
A man watches as a woman takes a bite out of an apple. She says “It tastes like banana.” “Wrong!” the man replies.
thirst/thirsty – hiainu
Through the bars of a prison cell, a prisoner says to a guard “I’m dying of thirst in here.” The guard replies “A fitting punishment for your heinous crimes.”
The above is an excerpt from the upcoming ‘Learn Maori Vocabulary With Mnemonics‘, a book by Jeff Ngatai.