By Fern Gavelek
Think farm fresh! Saturday, May 23 when cradling a just-plucked mango, sipping a cup of newly roasted coffee or inhaling the refreshing fragrance of lavender. And we at Edible want to hear all about it.
Governor David Ige has proclaimed May 23, 2015 as “Edible Hawaiian Islands Farm Day” across the state and invites residents and visitors alike to jump on the proverbial “farm wagon.”
It’s the official day to head out and meet the people who grow Hawai’i’s delicious food and flowers. VISIT a farm, EXPERIENCE a farm tour or SHOP at a farmers market.
Share your Farm Day fun and build the buzz by posting on social media. As an Edible Farm Day “field hand,” use the hashtag #eHIFarmDay15 so we can keep track of you! During last year’s inaugural Farm Day, Edible had almost three million impressions and 800-plus active users on social media.
“From across Hawai‘i to Japan, and from Italy to Israel, we had our devoted readers sharing all their Farm Day experiences,” details EHI Publisher Dania Katz. “We’ll be tracking Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for more great pics and stories.”
Find a handy list of statewide farm tours and farmers markets in Edible’s 2nd Annual Hawai‘i Farm Guide—it’s in the current print issue and online at http://ediblehi.com/2nd-annual-hawaii-farm-guide/. The guide contains farmers, ranchers, food producers and supporters conveniently divided by island. Before you visit, it’s best to confirm info as offerings are subject to change.
Farm Day Culminates with Blue Dragon Farm Dinner
Rounding out the day is an outdoor feast hosted by Farm Day sponsor Blue Dragon Restaurant on Hawai‘i Island. Chefs, farmers and attendees are gathering at Blue Dragon Farm in Hawi for a family style dinner nestled among an orchard of chico sapote trees.
Blue Dragon Chef Noah Hester is teaming up with a stable of top island chefs to prepare the sold-out foodie fun: Jeff Scheer of Maui Executive Catering is preparing a lamb appetizer, Scott Hiraishi of The Feeding Leaf, seafood; Stephen Rouelle of Under the Bodhi Tree, salad and Allen Hess of the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel’s Canoe House restaurant is grilling boar. In true farmer fashion, Noah Hester has prepared an assortment of pickled veggies: garlic purple-green beans, Chinese black radishes, kim chee rutabaga seasoned with sun dried ahi and rainbow radishes.
In addition, Keith Mallini of Rays on the Bay at the Sheraton Kona Resort and Spa at Keauhou Bay is concocting Ocean Vodka Cocktails. On tap will be ice-cold beer courtesy Kona Brewing Company.
“We’ve invited 25 farmers as our guests,” shares Chef Noah. “They can see how chefs use their products and how other attendees enjoy them. The farmers can also share ideas and connect with chefs.”
Noah says he enjoys the camaraderie of cooking with other chefs in a relaxed, outdoor setting. “It will be a fun setting to mingle and enjoy the bounty of the Big Island,” he smiles.
True to EHI’s mission, Farm Day is a celebration of our family farmers and food producers, including their dedication to providing us with the highest quality of fresh and seasonal foods.