Must Try Food in Hawaii
In my personal opinion Hawaii has a very diverse cuisine because its influences came from almost all continents, from Asia like Philippines, Korea, Japanese and Chinese; America and Europe as well as the Island nations. You can see this mix of culture when you participate in a Luau feast where noodles, rice, taro, stews, roast, deep fried meats and baked desserts are served in one long table. If you are in one of those continents mentioned above you will definitely find a connection to some of the local dishes you grew with.
This list can be huge but we will be limiting it to 12 items and these in my personal opinion sums up the diversity of the cuisine. So let’s start:
Chicken Long Rice – I guess if you are from Asia you would recognize this but it looks something different, it’s like a soup but it’s not, it’s like a stir fried noodles it’s not as well, it is more a combination of the two. Overcooked glass noodles flavoured with chicken and vegetables, and it’s delicious.
Acai Bowl – It sounds healthy because it is healthy, loaded with super fruits like blueberries, acai berries and goji berries to name some. Best served cold and best eaten in breakfast, a really good way to start a hot day in an island like Hawaii.
Shaved Ice – If the above does not brighten or cool you up then this is you next option, its artificial but like any sugary drinks it’s bad for you but good for your palate, once in a while it won’t hurt having this shaved ice especially when you know you will be burning all that sugar when you climb the Diamond head crater.
Hula Dog – I saw Anthony Bourdain eating this on TV so I was intrigued to try it on my own, well he is right it’s weird in a right kind of way. The mixture of flavours is really unique, imagine how taro bacon bun, with hot dogs in a mango sauce with passion fruit mustard would taste together, well you this is it, the Hula dog.
Poke – No it’s not that finger icon in Facebook, this is the Hawaiian style sashimi or ceviche where seafood like salmon or tuna is marinated in shoyu served with chillies, scallion, nuts and sometimes with tomatoes.
Hawaiian Host – Why not its chocolates, macadamia covered chocolates do I need to say more.
Poi – Actually I am not fond of this one like most of the ones who have it for first time, but since it’s one of the staple food in Hawaii you better try this water infused mashed taro. For a better experience try dipping meats into rather than eating it on its own.
Spam Musubi – Well Spams biggest market is Hawaii and it’s everywhere from noodles, plate lunches and in something like this. Spam musubi is basically grilled Spam on top of a block of rice, wrapped together with nori dried seaweed, you’re blind if you can see this in Hawaii, it’s everywhere.
Loco Moco – You can easily make this at home but nothing gets more authentic than getting this at any Farmers market or Food Trucks, a good burger patty on top of rice served with lots of gravy and topped with fried egg or two, sometimes there’s a bonus of macaroni salad on the side.
Kalua Pig – It’s a sin not to have some of this when you’re in Hawaii, it’s one of their specialties and cooking this is quite special, imagine putting hot lava stones underground together with a whole pig then covered banana leaves then with dirt and five hours later you have the most tender succulent smoky earthy pork cooked in the most exotic way.
Malasadas – Who does not love donuts? Well this is the island version influenced by the Portuguese, like traditional donuts its deep fried then rolled in sugar then filled with guava jam and sometimes melted chocolate and cream. Yum!
Seafood – Duh! This is an island and they have lots of this so if you live in a land locked country or if seafood is expensive in your place then indulge on seafood when you’re in Hawaii. I can still imagine myself when I was there, I binge ate some abalones, crabs, prawns and lobsters to name some.
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