chanko nabe fork to belly
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I’m back in LA again still reeling from all the holiday bliss. California has been very, very rainy. It’s rained almost every day since I’ve been here. I’ve always loved the rain and have absolutely nothing but love for the gray morning light that fills the living room in the early hours of the day and the crisp, cool – almost fresh – air that permeates the city. Such a dichotomy to where I spent the past two weeks. On my morning commute, I even get to see the tips of downtown’s tallest buildings covered in low bursts of fog and clouds. It’s gorgeous and I can’t get enough of it.

Roy took me for a quick day trip to Melrose and as we stopped at the crosswalk and stood in a sliver of sunlight between two buildings, he told me how much he loves this weather too. I took in a deep breath, and again I was reminded of how clean everything felt (though we all know that’s not saying much in a city like this). I’ve been enjoying the fall and now winter weather here almost too much, and it’s nothing short of the perfect backdrop for a warm, hearty, delicious meal.

chanko nabe fork to belly

chanko nabe fork to belly chanko nabe fork to belly

This year for Christmas, we got my mom her first Staub and she’s in love with it. I had also promised my Dad a home cooked meal complete with washing all the dishes, so Roy and I headed down to Marukai and Don Quijote – a couple of our favorite asian markets in Hawaii – with just one thing on our minds: chanko nabe. I’ve really grown to love stews and one-pot meals since we’ve been living to our current apartment over the last few years and life has only gotten busier. With less and less time on my hands, chanko nabe easily became a staple meal and one of favorite to make during the week. What I love most about it is how incredibly simple and customizable it is to suit whoever’s making it. I prefer mine with mostly veggies, mochi, noodles, and a little seafood, while Roy would probably throw heaps of thinly sliced beef and Japanese sausage in. We compromise and that usually works just fine, but I am tempted to make two separate stews at times!

But I suppose that’s the beauty of this dish. Meat-lovers can get their fix with sausage, thinly sliced beef or pork, and those who’ve got an itching for seafood can add clams and fish. Plus, if you’re vegetarian, you can make this dish without any meat and it’s still so incredibly delicious. The vegetables are such an important ingredient and where the soup gets a lot of its flavor from. I also love being able to feed a group of people with just this one dish. Though it helps to throw in some belly-filling carbs like udon or vermicelli noodles. You can even cook up some rice in a quick pinch and each person can add it to their own bowls to make sure everyone’s going home with a happy tummy.

chankonabe fork to belly

chanko nabe fork to belly

I shared this dish on the blog a few years back but since then, I’ve learned a thing or two and the recipe has only gotten yummier! Here’s a few tips.

• If you’re serving this for guests, start prepping everything an hour or so beforehand. The prep is minimal, but the cook time can add up. You don’t want your guests to be sitting around waiting for food all night!

• Use as many different veggies or proteins as you can/would like to. The variety is another factor to what gives the soup a deeper and more delicious flavor.

• For a thicker broth, cook the soup with the lid off until it reduces enough. If the broth is too thick, you can always add water to thin it out.

• It takes a little bit of trial and error to get the method for this recipe just right. I’ve definitely put the mochi at the bottom before and had to deal with a sticky mess at the bottom of the pot… But chanko nabe is fundamentally very simple and not difficult at all to get right.

chanko nabe fork to belly chanko nabe fork to belly

chanko nabe fork to belly

Chanko Nabe
Recipe serves 6-8 people.

for the sauce
4 cups water
4 tbsp miso paste
1 tbsp mirin
1 tbsp sake

first layer
carrot
lotus root
chinese cabbage
chrysanthemum greens
nishime kombu
taro balls

second layer
inari age
dried seaweed (wakame)
bamboo shoots
green onion
shiitake
shimeiji
fishcake
hard mochi
clams
shrimp
arabiki sausage

third layer
enoki
tofu
konnyaku noodles
salmon
shabu shabu thinly sliced beef or pork

add-ins
udon
starch noodles (ex. vermicelli)

1. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the water, miso, mirin, and sake. Set aside.
2. In a large pot, the one you’ll be using for cooking and serving, add the first layer of ingredients. These are the things that take the longest to cook. Continue by adding in the second layer, and then the third. By the time the stew is finished cooking, it won’t be nearly as pretty but you can still neatly arrange all the ingredients in the second and third layers for aesthetic reasons as it cooks.
3. Add the miso mixture to the pot. Cover with a lid and cook on medium-high heat. After 20-30 minutes, the water level in the pot should have risen significantly and some of the ingredients are almost done cooking. At this point, add water or more of the miso mixture depending on if the soup needs liquid or more flavor. Continue to let it cook with the lid off so the soup can reduce. At this point, add in any noodles to cook.
4. Once the chanko has been cooking for about an hour, everything should be well cooked and the broth thick and flavorful. Serve hot with chopsticks and a soup spoon and enjoy a wonderfully comforting meal!

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lilikoi cupcakes fork to belly
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Hello, friends! How was your Christmas and your New Years? I hope you’ve gotten just what you wanted from Santa and spent your time surrounded by loved ones and good food. Hawaii has been oddly chilly, dipping into the high 60’s at night which is pretty unusual for this forever summer island. I haven’t been up to anything too interesting. I mostly spend my days sleeping in, maybe getting in a hike or a jog with Meli, ingesting some form of raw fish, and watching a movie with my parents before bed. I’ve also been doing a lot of the things I haven’t had time for when school’s in full swing – planning meals, recipe testing, and enjoying the brainstorming process of what to bake for the blog.

lilikoi cupcakes fork to belly

lilikoi cupcakes fork to belly

This year, for our annual New Years party, my mom requested I make some type of finger-food for dessert as we usually serve everything potluck style. Without all my kitchen gear handy, I defaulted to the simplest thing I could think of: cupcakes. I used the Milkbar recipe for funfetti cake (sans funfetti sprinkles) as the base, filled the centers with spoonfuls of silky smooth Lilikoi Butter exclusively from my high school’s carnival, piped out a big dollop of mascarpone frosting and finished it all off with fresh berries, a dusting of powdered sugar, and a star sparkler! Oh boy was that a mouthful.

lilikoi cupcakes fork to belly lilikoi cupcakes fork to belly

lilikoi cupcakes fork to belly

lilikoi cupcakes fork to belly

By the end of the night, most if not all of the cupcakes had either been eaten or packed away as leftovers. We were only left with two, which are long gone. I’ll admit, I had to make sure my Dad wasn’t sneaking a few while I was photographing the cupcakes because he kept bothering me and asking when he could have one. On the plus side though, I had someone to eat all of the little cupcake centers I cut out!

Wishing you a wonderful start to 2017! Here’s to you and yours and all the goodness and love 2016 brought. I think we’ve all got some great things coming our way this year. I can just feel it 🙂

Sidenote: Sparklers HURT. Especially when holding one at close range to your hand/face. Believe me when I say that there are loads of photos of me grimacing and trying to smile through the pain!

lilikoi cupcakes fork to belly

lilikoi cupcakes fork to belly

lilikoi cupcakes fork to belly

lilikoi cupcakes fork to belly

Vanilla Cupcakes with Lilikoi Butter and Mascarpone Frosting
Cupcake recipe adapted from Momofuku Milkbar. Makes 19 cupcakes.
Notes: In this recipe, I used a locally made Lilikoi (Passion fruit) butter but you can also substitute with homemade or store-bought lemon curd. Every oven is different, but I found rotating the cupcakes half way through baking helped to make sure they rose evenly.

55g (4 tbsp or 1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
60g (1/3 cup) vegetable shortening
250g (1 1/4 cup) granulated sugar
50g (3 tbsp, tightly packed) light brown sugar
245g (2 cups) cake flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp kosher salt
3 large eggs
110g (1/2 cup) buttermilk
65g (1/3 cup) grapeseed oil
2 tsp vanilla extract

for the cupcakes:
1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Line cupcake tins with silver cupcake liners. Set aside.
2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter, shortening, and sugars together until light and fluffy. About 2-3 minutes.
3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour baking powder, and salt. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, oil, and extract. Set aside.
4. Add the eggs one at a time to the butter mixture, beating well after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. With the mixer on the lowest setting, stream in the wet ingredients. Beat well until there are no streaks of fat left. Add the flour in two additions, mixing until the batter is well combined but do not overmix.
5. Portion the batter into the cupcake tins, filling each about 1/2 way. Bake for 17-20 minutes, rotating the pan at the halfway point. Bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.
6. Use a large piping tip to cut out a small cylinder in the center of each cupcake. Fill with the Lilikoi butter.

1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
1 1/2 cups mascarpone cheese
6 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

for the frosting:
7. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter for a few minutes until light and fluffy. Add half of the powdered sugar and beat on high for another few minutes until the frosting is pale and the sugar fully incorporated.
8. Add the mascarpone and vanilla extract and beat on a lower setting until everything is evenly combined. Add the rest of the powdered sugar and beat for a few more minutes on high. The frosting should be smooth and a very pale, almost white color.
9. Transfer the frosting to a piping bag fitted with a large round tip and frost each cupcake. Decorate with fresh raspberries and blueberries and a sprinkle of powdered sugar.

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reindeer christmas doughnuts donuts
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I can’t believe it’s almost Christmas. As they all say: where did the year go? 2016 has been… a very *interesting* year of sorts. That’s the only word I can think of to describe it. Many highs, some monumental lows, and a lot of bouncing in between. I don’t think I’ve worked this hard in my entire life, and though I’m enjoying the winter break, I can’t help but feel a little bit restless, like there’s things I should be taking care of now that I’ll thank myself for getting done in the future.

Winter came at us in full force last month with some of the coldest and rainiest days I could remember. Not that I’m complaining, because I love rainy weather. On one particularly rainy night, I left the balcony door ajar and slept on the couch wrapped in all the faux fur blankets I could find. It also didn’t hurt to wake up to a clear blue sky – something that really only happens in the city after a good rain has gotten rid of all the smog in the air.

reindeer christmas doughnuts donuts

reindeer christmas doughnuts donuts reindeer christmas doughnuts donuts

The second best part about this kind of weather are the sweaters. They’re just about my other most favorite thing in the world. I have an entire drawer to hold all of them and each come with their own stories. The oldest sweater in my collection is the tattered gray LMU hoodie I borrowed (and never returned) from a friend in my first year of college. A Disney sweatshirt reminds me of a trip to Anaheim where my then-roommate and I freezing and a little hungover, bought matching sweatshirts to survive our day at Disneyland. My green cashmere brings back memories of Christmas Eve 2012 in Hawaii, worn with a big red bow in my hair and later Iceland and the blizzard of snow and water around Seljalandsfoss. I even have a few kitchy ones like Mabel’s from Gravity Falls and the Pusheen one I received in the Fall Pusheen Box. I don’t think I’ll ever have too many sweaters and too many fond memories I want to keep, hidden away in a drawer for the days I need something to keep me cozy and warm.

reindeer christmas doughnuts donuts

reindeer christmas doughnuts donuts reindeer christmas doughnuts donuts

I’ve been following @rymondtn’s delicious Instagram feed and was instantly inspired to make some festive reindeer doughnuts for the holidays this year. Speaking of, I have a little confession to share. I caved. I have been, not exactly what I would call a “fan”, but someone who’d never question candy melts because a) they got the job done and 9) they’re cheap. But this time around, when ready to dip the doughnuts, the candy melts proved disastrous and I had to scrap my entire first go at this. I decided that if I was going to try again, I was going to do it right and with quality chocolate. Enter: couverture chocolate. The queen of all chocolate, the *pinkies up* of the dessert world. I spent way too much money on three bars of white chocolate Valrhona (btw, let’s save the whole conversation on white chocolate not even really being chocolate for another day) and crossed my fingers that it would work because STUFF WAS EXPENSIVE OK.

The funny thing is, from the moment I started chopping the chocolate up to melting it and then watching it pour over the surface of each doughnut with such ease and silky smoothness, my whole world changed a little. I’m sorry candy melts, but I think I might be a chocolate snob now and I don’t know if I can ever feel the same way about you anymore. Though this is definitely now a future problem for my wallet. I guess what I’m saying is Merry Christmas and don’t forget to do something special for yourself this holiday season. We all need a little self indulgence and a little me-TLC. Why not splurge on a bar of the best chocolate you’ll ever have? Seriously though, please try a little of the fancy stuff if you’ve never had it… and baking at home with it – #lifechanger.

reindeer christmas doughnuts donuts

White Chocolate + Eggnog Reindeer Doughnuts
Recipe makes approximately 24 doughnuts.

for the eggnog doughnuts
4 tbsp (1/4 cup) unsalted butter, melted
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar, packed
4 eggs
2 cups eggnog (or 1 cup eggnog, 1 cup milk for lighter doughnuts)
1 tbsp vanilla extract
4 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg

1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease doughnut pans and either a cake pop/takoyaki pan and set aside.
2. In the bowl of a standmixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the melted butter and sugars until just combined. Add the eggs one at a time, making sure to beat well after each one. Mix in the eggnog and vanilla extract and continue to beat until the batter is even.
3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Add the dry ingredients to the wet in two additions and combine on the lowest mixer setting. The batter will be slightly thick. Do not over-mix the dough to avoid tough doughnuts.
4. Transfer the batter to a piping bag. Pipe the batter into the doughnut pans, filling them 1/2 to 2/3 of the way. Make sure to leave enough batter for the doughnut holes. Pipe the rest of the batter into the cake pop or takoyaki pan. Fill each hole about 1/3 of the way. You’ll need an even ratio of doughnuts to doughnut holes.
5. Bake for 10-13 minutes. Let the doughnuts and holes cool for a few minutes before removing from the pan and transferring to a cooling rack. Store in an airtight container at room temperature to keep them from drying out.

assembly
coverture white chocolate, melted
almonds
red hots or red m&ms
48 mini candy canes
royal icing in black, pink, and white

6. Dip the flatter side of each donut hole into the melted chocolate and secure it to the center of each doughnut. Cut two slits where desired placement of the ears are. Dip one end of an almond in the melted chocolate and push it into the slit for the ears. Let the chocolate set.
7. Once the chocolate has dried, drip more melted chocolate over the entire doughnut making sure to tap off any excess. Transfer to a wire rack over a baking tray. Add a red hot or red m&m for the nose.
8. When all the chocolate has set, gently wiggle in two candy canes between the ears for antlers. Use royal icing to pipe out the eyes, mouth, and cheeks.

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caramel apple pie fork to belly
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Note: I’m a bit late in the game, but I still wanted to salvage my commitment to posting a revised version of this Caramel Apple Pie every year. I wrote this post a few weeks ago and haven’t had the time to edit photos, compile, and upload everything until now. Enjoy, friends!

The apartment smells like pie and everything feels ok for five minutes. I have been unrelentingly stressed these last few months. So much so that I’d almost forgotten all about Thanksgiving and the impending doom that is December aka juggling personal engagements, Christmas shopping, and finishing up my hardest term yet. If you’ve been keeping up with F2B for a while, you might remember my yearly commitment to making this Caramel Apple Pie for Thanksgiving. Check out year 01 and year 02 here. This year is round 3, a year where I made some big changes in the recipe and for once didn’t make any mistakes and consequently have to run back to the grocery store for more apples. Things really fell into place this go around, something I really needed in the midst of losing my mind over other projects, and even though I know I said it last year, I have to say again that this is now my favorite version of this pie!

caramel apple pie fork to belly caramel apple pie fork to belly

caramel apple pie fork to belly

PIE NOTES (Revised Thanksgiving 2016)

1. This year, I swapped out Food52’s pie crust for Michelle’s lard and butter crust. I’ve been following her #humhipieamonth project and have been so eager to amp up my pie game since. I’m super sold. The pie crust came together in no time at all and was quite hassle free while rolling out and creating the braided lattice and cutting out the leaf shapes. Thanks, Michelle!

2. Rest your pie dough overnight. I’ve always avoided this step in the past. I’m impatient. But now I think it might just be a deal breaker. The most stressful part for me with pie-making is rolling out the dough, making sure it’s not too thin or thick and is large enough to cover the bottom and top of the pie evenly. By resting the dough overnight, this allows the gluten to relax and therefore makes it much easier to roll out.

3. Less caramel. The original recipe makes a lot of caramel, most of which I never end up using because only about 1/3 of it even makes it into the pie. By the time dessert rolls around, most people don’t need a giant drizzle of caramel in addition to the caramel already in the pie. This year, I halved the caramel portion of the recipe. I poured most of it into the pie and made the last remaining 1/2 cup into little salted caramels. Yeah, I still had way more than I needed.

4. If all else fails, make that pie pretty! I strayed from my basic b pie decorating ways and attempted an uneven lattice with braids and many many little autumn leaves. I had so much fun with this part, and though some of the leaves which I set too close to the edge of the pie pan drooped off a little, I’m just a little in love with how it turned out.

caramel apple pie fork to belly

caramel apple pie fork to belly caramel apple pie fork to belly

caramel apple pie fork to belly

Wednesday afternoon, I left early from school and after a very interesting Lyft ride with an aspiring rapper (who I was told makes beats for Drake and Chris Brown and recently turned down an offer from Def Jam), then got to work. The minute I pulled back my hair into a *no nonsense kinda* high pony and secured my apron around my waist, I left all the stresses and worries of the day and for the next few hours thought about nothing but pie. I measured and I whisked. I peeled and cored apples and fell in love all over again, as I do every year, with the smell of sugar and cinnamon and nutmeg and lemon together, neurons firing as I watched the caramel pour out in thick ribbons of warm toasty goodness. Though stressful in itself at times, baking, writing, photography – all of this – is my favorite respite from the very technical and brain liquifying work I do outside of this space.

caramel apple pie fork to belly

Today, I’m remembering to appreciate the little things in my life that keep me going and make me humble. Happy Thanksgiving to you and all your loved ones!

Caramel Apple Pie v. 03
Recipe makes one 9-inch double crust pie. Crust adapted from Hummingbird High.

for the pie crust
1 cup (8 ounces) ice
1 cup (8 ounces) cold water
1/4 cup (2 fl. ounces) apple cider vinegar
2 1/2 cups (12.5 ounces) all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup (1 stick // 4 ounces) cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces
1/2 cup (4 ounces) cold lard, cut into ½-inch pieces

1. In a large measuring cup, combine the ice, cold water, and apple cider vinegar. Whisk and keep in the fridge until ready to use.

2. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt. Add the cold butter and lard cubes. Use a pastry cutter to work the fat into the flour until only pea-sized bits remain.

3. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of the ice water mixture over the dough. Continue to use the pastry cutter to incorporate the liquid into the dough. Add more ice water 1 tablespoon at a time until the dough begins to come together. Pro-tip: to test, even if the dough looks dry, squeeze a bit together in your hand. If the dough holds its shape and does not crumble, you’ve added enough water.

4. Transfer the dough to a work surface and knead slightly into a disk. Cut each in half, portion into two separate discs and wrap in plastic. Let the dough rest in the fridge for at least an hour, ideally overnight is best.

for the filling
8 Golden Delicious apples
1/2 cup demerara sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
3 tbsp cornstarch
3 tbsp cold water

5. Peel and core the apples. Cut them into even slices and transfer to a large bowl. Add the demerara sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and lemon juice. Toss to coast evenly.

6. Transfer the apple mixture to a large saucepan. Cook on medium heat with the lid on until the apples are tender but not mushy or cooked all the way through. Make sure to stir every few minutes.

7. In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch and cold water together. Once the apples are done, transfer them back to a large bowl and let them cool slightly before adding the cornstarch mixture. Set aside.

for the caramel
3/4 cups granulated white sugar
2 1/2 tbsp light corn syrup
3 tbsp unsalted butter
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup heavy cream

8. In a saucepan, combine the sugar, corn syrup, butter, and salt. Heat on medium-high. Stir together for the first few minutes, then do not touch the mixture until it has reached a golden brown color. Remove the caramel from the heat and whisk in the heavy cream until incorporated. Set aside to cool.

extras
egg wash = 1 egg yolk + splash of milk
leaf shaped cookie cutters

9. Preheat oven to 425°F. Remove one of the dough discs from the fridge. Roll out the dough large enough to hang over the edges of your pie pan. Transfer to the pie pan and press around the edges to secure the dough into the pan. Add the cooked apple mixture and generously drizzle the caramel over the top.

10. Roll out the second dough disc and cut into thick and thin strips. Make sure to leave some scraps for the leaves. I used the extra thin strips to create braids. Form your lattice and re-roll any extra bits of dough. Cut out leaf shapes and secure to the edges of the pie pan with a bit of egg wash. Use a pastry brush to cover the entire crust in egg wash.

11. Bake at 425°F for 15 minutes. Lower the heat to 350°F and bake for another 45-50 minutes until the crust has turned golden brown. If the crust is browning too fast, you can use a strip of foil to cover the edges of the pie while it finishes baking. When done, let the pie cool for at least an hour before serving.

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hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly
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Some nights when I’m up late, I’ll get up to the roof of my apartment to unwind before bed. I like to watch the planes fly by and peek at all the little cars below. I wonder where everyone’s going and where they’ve been and what kind of lives they might have. I think about how there are so many people in the world and how we’re all different but yet so fundamentally similar. We laugh and cry and love and think and feel and as I look down at the city, I can imagine all these strings tethering us to one another, sometimes in ways we don’t really even know.

The population of O’ahu is approximately just under 1 million. 1,000,000 people living on 597 mi² of land. Basically, what this means is when people I meet learn I’m from Hawaii and ask: “Oh, do you know -insert random friend who is also from Hawaii’s name here-?”… chances are I probably do or at least know someone who definitely does.

hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly

hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly

Before I started F2B, I was a huge fan of Two Red Bowls and Cynthia, the wonderful person behind it. She’s a full-time lawyer, who also somehow finds time to run a blog, and takes these insanely gorgeous photos of meals that make me want to head to the grocery store and attempt myself the second I see a new post. She’s kind of superwoman. *no kidding* I kind of fan-girled out the first time Cynthia left a comment on one of my posts… OKAY get it together me. But getting back to what I was saying, one morning I was on Facebook and saw a few wedding photos that a friend from highschool had posted. Days later, I saw Cynthia’s blog post on her wedding, put two and two together and realized that said highschool friend’s brother is Andy aka B2 aka Cynthia’s husband. I told you! I don’t know how I didn’t realize it earlier, after Cynthia’s posts of spam musubi and malasadas and chicken katsu. It drives me bananas how there are so many people on the planet yet this world can feel so small after moments like these. Who woulda thunk it.

hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly

Today we’re celebrating some more big news for Cynthia and Andy, which is the newest addition to their sweet little family, dear Luke aka B3 aka the cutest little thing ever! And in honor of both of their love (and I’m sure soon, Luke’s too) for Hawaii, I’m sharing this big ol’ fruit platter filled with some of my favorite local fruits! I’m sure most of you are all familiar with strawberries, blueberries, kiwi, and perhaps dragonfruit so I won’t spend time discussing those as you can easily find them in most grocery stores. The main stars are these that are grown in Hawaii and expensive AF to purchase if you ever see the same thing on the mainland.

Papaya is just about my favorite fruit in all the land. I love slicing it in half and seeing the bright orange fruit surrounding a bed of dozens of strange black seeds. If it’s ripe, all you need is a spoon and maybe a little squeeze of lemon and you’re on your way to heaven. If I could take a 10 lb bag of them with me on the plane, oh I would. Hey remember how we were talking about how incredibly small this world is? My first trip to the grocery store back in LA, I had zero desire to eat any of the food I saw as I was still coming off my poke and acai bowls everyday high. Then, hidden away under the bottom row of bananas, I saw three big glorious papayas. ALSO, they were from Diamondhead Papayas, meaning grown in Hawaii and had been shipped all the way over to the very Whole Foods I shop at in DTLA (I have never seen papaya at a grocery store other than at home), and not from Mexico or Asia.

Now I know what you’re thinking. Courtney, you can find Pineapple and Mango almost anywhere. Yes, except the ones grown in Hawaii are the best. They’re so sweet and such a vibrant color and you also don’t have to spend a fortune. Also mango trees are kind of everywhere. My parents helped out with making mango chutney for my highschool one year and my Dad walked around Manoa to find mango trees and ask the homeowners if we could pick them. And I am all also all about lihing pineapple.

Lastly, Lilikoi/Passionfruit. I don’t know what else to say about this that I haven’t said already. I’ve made passion fruit curd, passion fruit tarts, passion fruit eclairs – when I think of home I think of lilikoi. If you haven’t had it before, I’m like 99.78% sure you’ll love it.

Head over to Steph or Alana’s blog to get a full link list of everyone’s recipes!

PS: Here’s some photos of the stuff I ate while I was home ’cause ya know, food blog. I’m also trying to prove that yes, I did mean what I said about eating raw fish for almost every meal.
PPS: I learned how to make every letter of the alphabet in pretzels and sorry in advance for potato quality on some of the iPhone photos.

hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly

hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly

hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly

BE STILL MY BEATING HEART

hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly

hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly

hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly

hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly

hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly

hawaiian fruit bowl fork to belly

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