I haven’t been blogging about our work at South Maui Sustainability with the Kihei Elementary School Garden as much as I should have. We’ve made a lot of progress in the last year, and even got written up in The Huffington Post by Lorna Sass, who was here on vacation.
As of yesterday, the School Garden is almost finished. I don’t believe we actually got three truckloads of compost distributed, and still have a few small areas to do. This has been such an amazing project. I’m thinking it would be fun to make yellow catsup from our very sweet tomatoes for the kids at the school next harvest day.
In the meantime, we decided to dine on some of the tomatoes, basil and arugula I brought home yesterday. I also grabbed some parsley from my own garden to add to the meal. We’ve been doing our best to be locavores even though it’s tough to do on an island. We’re hoping our new Whole Foods Market will help.
Peter, my husband and personal chef (Shhh! He doesn’t like to be called that…) has recently been putting his knife skills to good use and saving us money by buying whole tenderloin beef cuts from Costco and trimming them himself. It’s much more economical than buying the steaks separately, and with what’s going on in the beef industry, if we’re going to eat beef at all, we feel we should make it count.
A single tenderloin usually yields six or seven nice filet mignons and a chateaubriand roast, and the chain meat can be used in a number of ways, such as stews or stir-frys, or in last night’s case, a meat sauce for our pasta. Not a bad investment for roughly $50.
Here’s Peter’s Pasta with Tomato and Meat Sauce recipe for last night’s meal:
1 large onion diced fine (we used a Hawaii-grown onion from Costco)
1 celery stalk diced fine
1 carrot diced fine
Roughly 1 pound of chain meat from the tenderloin chopped into small pieces
About a dozen of the tomatoes I brought home from the School Garden
A handful of basil leaves chopped, also from the School Garden
A handful of parsley leaves, chopped, from my garden
Several cloves of garlic (we love garlic)
Salt and pepper
A few drops of lemon juice
Core the tomatoes and place them on a sheet pan. Place the pan under a low broiler until you hear a slight sizzle. This caramelizes and softens them slightly. Don’t let them char.
Put the tomatoes into a food processor along with any juices in the sheet pan, throw in the garlic cloves and some of the basil and parsley. Pulse until chopped fine, but not into a puree.
Sear the meat in a large pan over medium high heat with some olive oil (regular, not extra virgin) and a little salt and pepper, remove and set aside.
Sauté the diced onion, celery and carrot in the same pan with a little salt and pepper until nicely caramelized, then add the meat and the processed tomatoes.
Reduce the heat to simmer, cover with a splatter screen (so you don’t end up having to clean tomato off all the surrounding horizontal surfaces) set a timer and go watch TV or something for about 30 minutes.
When the liquid is mostly (but not completely) cooked off, the sauce is ready. Turn the heat off, chop up the rest of the basil and parsley and mix it in. Add a few drops of lemon juice to tighten up the flavors. Check the seasoning.
We served our mostly locavore dinner over whole wheat spaghetti with grated Parmigiano-Reggiano. Our salad was a combination of the lettuce we got from our Kula Fields delivery and the arugula from the School Garden, served with a few sprinkles of balsamic vinegar and extra virgin olive oil, and some fresh ground black pepper.
We are trying to encourage people to look for island-grown produce. As I review the Tuesday paper, we have our big 3 South Maui grocery store flyers. This week, here are the local grown ads. Note: This may not be a complete list and products may not be produced locally – just my best quick assessements and assumptions!
- Okinawan Sweet Potatoes 8lbs for $10. (mmm…the ad says Locally Grown but then says imported? What’s the deal Safeway? I do know that these grow year round on the islands and are often a good local food.)
- Green Cabbage 8 pounds for $10. Same comment. I hope they don’t grow them locally, ship them to a mainland distribution center and then import them here.
- May’s Hawaiian Teriyaki Beef Patties 6lb box for $15.99
- Meadowgold drinks 64 oz. $1.49
- Hamakua Cocktail Tomato 16oz. $3.29
- Hawaiian Sun Fruit Drinks or Teas 2 6packs for $5.00
- Aloha Shoyu Soy Sauce – Gallon for $7.99
- Haleakala Dairy Iced Tea Gallon for $4.59
- Love’s Hawaii’s Hearth Breads Selected Varieties $4.29
- Love’s Regular White Bread 1 lb. $3.29
- Diamond Bakery Graham Crakers or Animal Crackers $2.99
- Meadowgold POG Gallon for $4.99
- Hawaiian Isles Kona Blend Coffees 10oz Buy 3 – get 1 free (Save $5.99)
- Menehune Water 2 gallons for $5.00
- Local “Gold” Pineapple $0.89/per pound
- Local String Beans $3.99 for 16oz.
- Local Green Bell Peppers $2.19/lb
- Cucumber $1.39/pound
- Head Cabbage $0.89/pound
- Kanai Tofu 16 oz package $3.29
- Kalua Turkey, Chicken or Pork 12 oz package $5.99
- Love’s King sized bread 16 oz $3.39
- Royal Kona Coffee (100% Kona) 8 oz $3.39
- Meadow Gold Yogurts 6 oz $0.99
- Meadow Gold nectars and POG 1/2 gal $2.99
- Meadow Gold Twinn Pops 6 pack $2.29
- Hawaiian Sun Frozen Coconut Milk 12 oz. $3.59
- Koha Frozen Mixed Vegetables 16 oz $1.69
That’s it — looks like Foodland and Star Market are neck and neck.
Of note: None of the markets advertised local fish!
I just read this article where the FDA wants to change the advisory on consumption of fish. YEA! You have to remember that I live in Maui where fish are abundant and a great cut of Ahi tuna cost less per pound than a decent steak. I’ve always been a fish girl. As a kid, I loved fish sticks. I don’t remember even liking visits to McDonalds until they created the fish sandwich! I’m dating myself here. I google it and found that it was introduced in 1963 which makes my memory about right as I would have been 6-7. I remember going to McDonald’s after church on Sundays and I never liked their hamburgers because they put onions on them.
When the mercury scares came out, I thought about eating less fish. When the internet became prevalent, I searched to find out what happens to people if they are “mercury-laden”. There isn’t much except in its impacts on kids. But truth is that all fish is not filled with mercury… so I still the smaller fish and limited my intake of the big fish (my favorites) to once or twice a week. This is hard in Maui.
So, I’m happy to hear this report. I will go off to my localvore potluck dinner with my Sustainability group tonight, and I’m sure there will be plenty of fish and poke to go around and enjoy! Localvore — meaning food grown/produced in your area which we defined as Hawaii. It really makes you realize how much we import! We will also be watching a great movie, “The Power of Community…How Cuba Survived Peak Oil“. Living on a remote island in a tropical climate we have many similarities to Cuba. We should be building systems to be less dependent on oil and imports. It only makes sense.
The mangos are winning! Every morning, I pick up a few and we try to keep up with the supply. Everywhere in Maui you see FREE mangos. We have more mangos than we know what to do with. Mango season is fairly short here with mango trees producing for about a month. But during that month we are blessed with sweet tropical fruits. A typical day starts with mango eggs, followed by a mango and chicken salad for lunch, mango slurry for snack, mango chicken, pork or fish for dinner and mango sorbet for dessert. Here are my husband’s best recipes.
Asian-inspired Mango Salsa
By Peter Liu
2 large ripe mangos, finely chopped (squeeze the remnants around the pit into the bowl)
Fresh ginger, about twice the size of your thumb, peeled and finely chopped
1 large shallot or 2 scallions (green onions) finely chopped
1 teaspoon Ponzu (Kikkoman is best. Ponzu is just a seasoned soy + citrus so you may get similar results w/splash of soy)
1 teaspoon rice vinegar
The juice of 1 calamansi (or 1/2 lemon or lime)
Handful of fresh cilantro, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
1/4 teaspoon of salt (just enough until you taste the shallots/onions)
1/2 teaspoon of black pepper
Fresh chile pepper or dried red pepper flakes to taste
Mix all ingredients together in a bowl and allow to sit for a 1/2 hour. Serve with chips or use with chicken, pork or fish.
Mango Pork Roast
By Peter Liu
Pork butt roast (shoulder), about 3 lbs.
2 ripe mangos, finely chopped
Fresh ginger, about twice the size of your thumb, chopped into large pieces for easy removal later. Smash to release flavor.
1 large onion, sliced
Several cloves of fresh garlic, smashed to release flavor
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon Ponzu (Kikkoman is best)
2 tablespoons dry white wine
Handful of fresh herbs — whatever you have on hand: basil, parsley, rosemary, etc.
Pile the onion slices in the middle of a piece of aluminum foil about twice the size of the pork. Rub the pork with salt and pepper and place on top of the onions. Place the smashed garlic cloves on top of the pork. Place the mango pieces on top of the pork and garlic. Distribute the smashed ginger around the pork. Place the handful of fresh herbs on top of the pile and sprinkle the Ponzu and white wine on the whole thing. Wrap the foil up tightly around the pile to trap as much moisture as possible inside. Wrap the whole thing in another piece of foil to ensure good insulation. Bake at 300F 6 hours in an oven or outdoor grill (do not allow temperature to go any higher).
After 6 hours, remove from heat and allow to rest for 10 minutes undisturbed. Cut open the foil from the top and extract the pork. Discard the spent herbs and ginger. Tease apart with forks and serve. Use the remaining mango, onions and garlic cloves as desired.
This is usually the type thing I put on my personal blog but I accidentally posted it here and decided to leave it. An occasional healthy recipe never hurt anyone!
Juicing is an excellent way of producing a healthy and tasty drink. I’ve tried making this without a juicer (Dr. Oz suggested this) with little success. Buy a juicer and use it daily! The ingredients I use depend on what I have on hand but I’ve found a few guidelines that help.
- 1 citrus fruit – I use Calamansis because I have a tree in my yard, but lemons or limes work well too.
- 1-2 carrots
- Greens – ~ 2 cups of raw spinach or greens of any type
- Liquid Green – 2 cups of vegetables that are high in water content such as celery, cabbage or cucumber
- Fruit – 2 apples or sweet fruit (mangos, pineapple)
- 1 nob of ginger
- I like adding hot peppers, basil, mint just to change flavor up.
- NOTE: soft fruits like bananas or super ripe mangos do not do well in most juicers. If I have a crop, I use the blender on these and add them after juicing.
I usually squeeze the citrus first to avoid bitter pith in drink. (Calamansi’s have very little pith and can be used whole). Prepare everything by washing, pitting and cutting pieces that will fit in your juicer. Start the juicer and add a handful of greens followed by more solid pieces. Continue until done. Stir well. Pour over ice and enjoy! This makes about 16 ounces.