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skchai

Local Snack Foods

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Here is a list of some popular Hawai`i snack foods. Which ones do you remember from your youth? Are there any you care to add to the list?

crack seed (Chinese-style preserved fruits)

  • li hing mui (dried Chinese salted plum / apricot with anise flavoring)
  • sweet whole seed (like li hing mui, but wet and less salt)
  • wet mango
  • lemon peel

crisps / chips

  • maui potato chips - original Kobayashi brand now overshadowed?
  • won ton chips - Maeda factory burned down
  • nibbits - Yick Lung's one holdover
  • taro chips

crackers

  • saloon pilots: hardtack - now in ginger and coconut flavors
  • kakimochi / arare - like the Japanese kinds but in huge quantities

mochi (ricecakes)

  • butter mochi
  • taro mochi
  • chichidango

shave ice

  • shave ice with azuki
  • bing su - Korean style
  • halohalo - filipino style

Will try to post more detailed descriptions / pictures on aspects of this endless topic when I have time. . .


Sun-Ki Chai
http://www2.hawaii.edu/~sunki/

Former Hawaii Forum Host

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do various pokes count as snacks.

my wife and I snack on pokes all the time, I make a killer ahi one at home too.


"I did absolutely nothing and it was everything I thought it could be"

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Willie,

I don't know if poke counts as a snack - it's usually served with a meal as a main or side dish. If you and your wife snack on poke all the time rather than the usual stuff, though, you're probably a pretty healthy family!


Sun-Ki Chai
http://www2.hawaii.edu/~sunki/

Former Hawaii Forum Host

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What is or what are POKE?

A Canuck prairie girl wants to know . :smile:


Dejah

www.hillmanweb.com

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at the movies, it has always been popcorn, kakimochi and plain m&m's all tossed together and eaten very loudly! what a great way to get stink breath!

edited to explain that "stink breath" is not misspelled...but pidgin :biggrin:


Edited by alanamoana (log)

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Cherry seed, guava peel, wasabi peanuts, cuttlefish, shrimp chips, typhoon and hurricane popcorn from the honolulu popcorn company (I think the name is), maui chips are good (the clear and red bags), peanut butter mochi. I'm getting hungry.

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When I was a keiki (50's) there were two kinds of coconut chips sold. One was fried and lightly salted and the other heavily coated with powdered sugar.

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Won ton pi chips! Mmmm. Remember when Checkers and Pogo hawked them on their show? And senbei, love that gingery-sugary flavah.

And good mango seed...the black kind, slices that had a thick layer of meat on the outside of the seed. Hard to find that kind now...all that bright orange dried mango coated with li hing mui. It seems like most seed is imported from China, Thailand and other countries. Back in the day, back in the Yick Lung day, was seed made here? Seed has changed a lot in the last 30 years, no?

Green mango and shoyu! That salt-n-tart combination is the taste of small kid time.

Oh and Tomoe, sweet, chewy and comes with a prize. I still buy a box once in a while, like when I'm in the check out line at Shirokiya.

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Lopaka, the sugared coconut chips are still pretty easy to find. The salted kind are rarer, and I thought they were unavailable until I saw some being sold recently under the Ed and Don's brand name (the Ed and Don's Ice Cream shops no longer exist, but the brand lives on in snack products).

Lesa, Rlivings, Alanamoana, your comments bring back a lot of memories. Some random thoughts:

Yick Lung is still around, but somehow it only makes Nibbits, not the crack seed that was so dominant all the way up to the 1980s. Have no explanation why. I do think that in the old days seed was made here rather than being imported - this might account in part for the decline of Yick Lung and the rise of other brands such as Enjoy.

Notes for malihini: No, crack seed has nothing to do with "crack", luckily. It is a kind of preserved, salted fruit of Southern Chinese origin that reached amazing proportions and diversity once it got to Hawai`i. In the past, the seed itself was often cracked to release the flavor of the kernel, which is how it got its name. Yick Lung was for a long time the dominant producer of packaged crack seed on the islands. Currently, it's remaining product is a spicy, extruded potato starch product called "nibbits" which has retained a following in Hawai`i for a long time. Here's a picture of Nibbits:

i2970.jpg

I think I mentioned in the "omiyage" thread that both Maui "Kitch'n Cook'd" potato chips and Big Island Maebo "One Ton" wontonpi chips are currently unavailable in Honolulu. The Maui chips are a mystery that I'd like to clear up one of these days - the company still exists. The Maebo factory burned down and they still don't seem to have been able to restore production. . .

Tomoe Ame is still around and popular - probably, a lot more popular than in Japan!

Note: These are a kind of millet candy that's been imported from Japan for generations. Inside the plastic wrapper is a rice-paper wrapper that you can eat along with the candy so your hand's don't get sticky. The box always contains a token toy, which has deteriorated in quality over the years (nowadays you almost always get a sticker). Here's a picture of some some I got recently, including the prize:

i2972.jpg


Sun-Ki Chai
http://www2.hawaii.edu/~sunki/

Former Hawaii Forum Host

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