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eG Foodblog: SuzySushi - A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs


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Thank you for all of your great work!!

Would I do it again? Probably not! It's a lot of work -- even when most of the dishes were bought ready-made -- and the flavors are too similar (either soy-salty, sweet and salty, or fishy-salty). But I'm glad I did it once, and we'll nibble off it for several days.

:laugh: I wouldn't do it, either! Osechi ryori are more or less preserved foods (meant to be eaten on the first three days of the new year) and are heavily seasoned. Besides, as you know, many Japanese dishes are simply seasoned with soy sauce, mirin, sake, sugar, and miso.

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Suzy, I am also truly enjoying your blog and seeing some of my country's cuisine and even one of my countrymen. :biggrin: Or shall I say countrywoman. I was surprised to see that the Dole souvenir store had souvenirs made mostly in the Philippines. Then again, Dole has the biggest pineapple and banana plantation in Mindanao and labour is so cheap back in the Philippines.

I look forward to seeing more pics and more of the good food in your home and in Oahu.

Doddie aka Domestic Goddess

"Nobody loves pork more than a Filipino"

eGFoodblog: Adobo and Fried Chicken in Korea

The dark side... my own blog: A Box of Jalapenos

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Thank you for such a wonderful blog, Suzy! I always wished to see you blog from Hawaii. Last Christmas my wish came true!

Looks like in Hawaii, you get a little bit of A LOT of things!

W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
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Looks like in Hawaii, you get a little bit of A LOT of things!

Yes, we do, but mostly Asian things. Except for Italian, most European foods are still hard to find in markets here. The one Middle Eastern market went out of business several years ago due to lack of patronage (although there are a handful of well-established Greek and Middle Eastern restaurants). No Eastern European or Russian food except for frozen pierogi and a pierogi lunch stand in the downtown business district. No Latin American food except for Mexican (amended to add, the one Mexican market here does carry a few ingredients from Brazil). It's still pretty hard to get a really good selection of cheese, and I still miss New York pizza, Italian bakeries, and Jewish deli foods like tongue and chopped chicken liver...

Edited by SuzySushi (log)

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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A couple of other things I forgot to mention in blogging:

I never did get around to telling you how my husband and I met long-distance. He lived in Hawaii at the time, and I lived in NYC. In those pre-Internet days, I belonged to a national singles' group called Classical Music Lovers' Exchange, and he had just joined, placed his 25-words-or-less blurb in the group's newsletter. I don't remember the exact wording, but besides mentioning a few of his favorite composers, it said, "loves sushi and chocolate." :laugh::laugh::laugh:

And I figured someone who loves sushi and chocolate can't be all bad, so I wrote him a letter. . . :raz: The rest is history!

* * *

For last night's dessert, I bought some "mochi ice cream." A Japanese-American invention, it's very popular in Hawaii and also available in some parts of California. Is it available in Japan?

Anyway, these are ice cream bonbons surrounded by soft mochi dough. They come in standard flavors like chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, and coffee, but also more exotic flavors like mango, green tea, and azuki bean.

In fact, I completely forgot that we had them and we didn't eat them last night!

The mochi from the kagami mochi display traditionally is broken into pieces and eaten on January 11th.

Edited by SuzySushi (log)

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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Suzy, thanks for taking the time to blog during a hectic holiday week.

My mother has a life-long dream of going to Hawaii. She has a big birthday next year, and my parents have a big anniversary. When I mentioned having a party, she told me that she didn't want one - she wants the family to go to Hawaii together. I've shown her some of your fabulous pictures - and it's made her want to go even more. ("Can we go a year early?" "No, mom.")

I'm surprised that there isn't more Jewish deli available - considering the number of snowbirds. (Potential business for me? :wink: )

For last night's dessert, I bought some "mochi ice cream." A Japanese-American invention, it's very popular in Hawaii and also available in some parts of California. Is it available in Japan?

Anyway, these are ice cream bonbons surrounded by soft mochi dough. They come in standard flavors like chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, and coffee, but also more exotic flavors like mango, green tea, and azuki bean.

What exactly is mochi dough?

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For last night's dessert, I bought some "mochi ice cream." A Japanese-American invention, it's very popular in Hawaii and also available in some parts of California. Is it available in Japan?

I believe the origins for this might be Japanese, where they are known as Yukimi Daifuku (launched by Lotte in 1981). Here's a link to Lotte's current Yukimi Daifuku lineup.

http://www.lotte.co.jp/products/catalogue/ice/03.html

Suzy: I've been enjoy your blog immensely. It brings back so many trips and visits to Hawaii, although none recently since my parents moved back to Vancouver. In fact, I wish your blog had been around during our last couple of visits to Honolulu!

Thank you for the fantastic and highly informative blog!

Edited by sanrensho (log)
Baker of "impaired" cakes...
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My mother has a life-long dream of going to Hawaii.  She has a big birthday next year, and my parents have a big anniversary. When I mentioned having a party, she told me that she didn't want one - she wants the family to go to Hawaii together.  I've shown her some of your fabulous pictures - and it's made her want to go even more. ("Can we go a year early?" "No, mom.")

That would be a fabuous vacation! Let me know if you're planning to come out here!

I'm surprised that there isn't more Jewish deli available - considering the number of snowbirds.  (Potential business for me? :wink: )

YES!!! Please open a branch here!!! :wub:

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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this will be a great blog! thanks for taking the time Suzy. Part of my family is from the Big Island in a very small town up north called Hawi- have you ever been to the Big Island??

I'm excited to see your luau! We use to have them when I was little.

We have a family xmas planned here in Seattle but then will take off for our annual new years eve trip with friends who live in europe- last year was Russia, this year is New York!!

Merry Christmas!

Sorry I missed responding immediately. . . Hope you're having a great rendezvous in New York!!!

You know, I've never been to the Big Island, although Michael has. Between the airfare, hotel, and car rental, it's kind of expensive for the family to go there (despite kama`aina discounts), and we'd rather use the money for a trip to someplace further away, say, the mainland. The only other island I've visited is Maui, to attend a friend's wedding.

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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For last night's dessert, I bought some "mochi ice cream." A Japanese-American invention, it's very popular in Hawaii and also available in some parts of California. Is it available in Japan?

I believe the origins for this might be Japanese, where they are known as Yukimi Daifuku (launched by Lotte in 1981). Here's a link to Lotte's current Yukimi Daifuku lineup.

http://www.lotte.co.jp/products/catalogue/ice/03.html

Suzy: I've been enjoy your blog immensely. It brings back so many trips and visits to Hawaii, although none recently since my parents moved back to Vancouver. In fact, I wish your blog had been around during our last couple of visits to Honolulu!

Thank you for the fantastic and highly informative blog!

Thank you!

I guess this means mochi ice cream wasn't invented in California after all! :laugh: The kind we get here looks like the one to the right in Lotte's catalog. (And the colors are softer than those in the photo to the left.)

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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I loved this blog, Suzy! Thank you, and have a happy, healthy, and delicious new year!

One question I didn't ask is whether there are Malaysian or Indonesian restaurants you like in Oahu.

Edited by Pan (log)

Michael aka "Pan"

 

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Wow, that was wonderful. Just warmly gently tropically bubbling over with facsinating foods and flavors, links galore with sound of surf in the pleasant distance. So many many things I've never heard of before. Great and clear explanations, stunning photos, truly a wonder filled experience you've provided for us all.

(My husband was born in Hawaii.)

Thank you so much! I've so enjoyed myself. I feel like I was there with you all. I just want one more bite of that chocolate pie though, the one with all the coconut!! :laugh:

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Thanks for the beautiful photos! I've missed much of this week so I'll go back now and read the whole blog. Just wanted to say thanks before your blog was over. I've never seen taro mochi before I wonder, if I can't find it locally, if it's very difficult to make?

If only Jack Nicholson could have narrated my dinner, it would have been perfect.

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I loved this blog, Suzy! Thank you, and have a happy, healthy, and delicious new year!

One question I didn't ask is whether there are Malaysian or Indonesian restaurants you like in Oahu.

Thanks, Pan! Same to you!

As for Malaysian and Indonesian restaurants, the answer is "yes. . . no. . . maybe"!

Malaysian/Indonesian restaurants have come and gone in-and-out of business. :sad: Unfortunately, there isn't much of a Malaysian-Singaporean-Indonesian community on Oahu to support them on a regular basis.

There used to be one M'Asian place we really liked in Kaimuki, but it didn't have main-street frontage, so it evaporated pretty quickly. (As Michael said, "Bad location.")

Bali Indonesia hung around for a few years, on Kapiolani Blvd. near Ala Moana Center. They served rijsttafel dishes, but I think the recent political unreast in Indonesia made a dent in their patronage, and they, too, have gone out of business.

Right now, the only Malaysian place remaining is the tiny (2 or 3 tables) Nonya-style Green Door, in Chinatown. And E&O Trading Co., in Ward Centre (a small upscale mall), is a branch of a mainland chain that serves trendy interpretations of Indonesian dishes.

Edited by SuzySushi (log)

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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Thanks for the beautiful photos!  I've missed much of this week so I'll go back now and read the whole blog.  Just wanted to say thanks before your blog was over.  I've never seen taro mochi before I wonder, if I can't find it locally, if it's very difficult to make?

Honestly, I've never tasted taro mochi and don't know anything about how it's made! I'll have to go back and try some next time I'm at the farmers' market. :biggrin:

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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Wonderful warm delve into sunshine and scenery and greenery and food---just exactly what a Hawaii blog should be.  And family and friends and home just added that extra touch.

Thanks for inviting us along---it's been glorious.

rachel

PS---that's just how Chris and I met.

Do you mean you met through CMLE, or by long-distance correspondence in general?

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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Through a sweet little newspaperish magazine available in grocery stores, quick-marts and fillin' stations. Ours was called "Tradewinds" and spanned several states, I think; you could find lily bulbs, hound pups, parts for your '58 Fairlane, recipes, and nice people to chat with or meet.

Five of us "girls" who went out together on occasion dared each other to answer one, and he was the one I picked. I still get chills at the "maybe not" of the whole thing, but he says it would have happened somehow. He subscribes to the theory that he'd have stopped to fix my flat tire, or some such happenstance.

I'm just glad it happened. :wub:

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Through a sweet little newspaperish magazine available in grocery stores, quick-marts and fillin' stations.  Ours was called "Tradewinds" and spanned several states, I think; you could find lily bulbs, hound pups, parts for your '58 Fairlane, recipes, and nice people to chat with or meet.

Five of us "girls" who went out together on occasion dared each other to answer one, and he was the one I picked.  I still get chills at the "maybe not" of the whole thing, but he says it would have happened somehow.  He subscribes to the theory that he'd have stopped to fix my flat tire, or some such happenstance.

I'm just glad it happened. :wub:

You were fated to meet! :biggrin:

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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What exactly is mochi dough?

Pam: Just realized I missed answering this question. Mochi dough is made from glutinous rice flour (mochiko) or pounded cooked glutinous rice. It's the same dough that's used to form mochi (glutinous rice cakes) and traditional Japanese pastries by the same name. It's generally cooked by steaming, and has a taffy-like consistency (without the sweetness or stickiness).

SuzySushi

"She sells shiso by the seashore."

My eGullet Foodblog: A Tropical Christmas in the Suburbs

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