Show-off holiday post: Hawaii – what I ate

Knowing where my priorities lie, my lovely friend Lorraine (who’s Hawaiian-born-and-bred), said to me “You know you’re not going to Hawaii for the food, right?”

Despite Lorraine’s words of caution, our food experiences in Hawaii were very good*.  Some of our food experiences were also particularly memorable (I’m looking at you poi).

1. Town Restaurant – easily the best meal we had. The salads… still thinking about them (especially the arugula, beets, orange, mint, cucumber, chickpeas and mascarpone salad).

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2. Mai Tais. What’s not to love? My favourite Mai-Thai-moment (that’s a thing when you sampled as many as I did) was at a luau (I know, tacky but fun if you just go with it) when the guy at the next table said “Last time I was here I had 16 Mai Tais. And that’s not counting the Maui Sunsets.” Love your work, mate.

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3. I ordered a spinach omlette at Ken’s House of Pancakes in Hilo. The omlette was made with eleventy hundred eggs and came with a side of hash browns (or pancakes) and toast (or biscuits). The serving sizes were a tad bigger than we’re used to. Here’s my son in a post-waffle-food-coma (yes, he’s done, even though his plate appears virtually untouched.

food-hawaii-14Worth noting that it was probably the best omlette I’ve ever had.

food-hawaii-124. Hot, sugary squares of delicious – malasadas (Hawaiian doughnuts with fillings more exotic than ordinary jam – the red filling above is guava). There’s even a drive-thru malasada service.

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5. I’m not ordinarily into cake but this carrot cake with pecan and coconut icing spoke to me in a language I never knew existed.

food-hawaii-176. L&L Hawaiian Barbecue – it’s the Hawaiian equivalent of fast-food and it looks fairly ordinary (grilled chicken, rice and mac’n’cheese above) but boy was it was tasty.

food-hawaii-97. On our first day on the Big Island and in search of food, we happened across a farmer’s market near Ocean View – bean burritos, grilled corn, grilled avacado with salsa and crab meat, and wood-fired pizza. Rounded out with freshly-squeezed POG juice (passionfruit, orange and guava). All delicious.

* I’m ignoring US bread which, in Australia, we would call cake. And the fact that breakfast cereals are all bowls of sugar with low-fat milk – why can’t you get a decent muesli and full-cream milk? And these things pictured below. For the love of God, why? Are these things even food?

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