Category: Cook

Keiki in the Kitchen: After School Snack with Maui Mom Sarah Burns

Photo by Jana Morgan

“When I pick my kids up from school, they’re always hungry!” laughs Sarah Burns, professional blogger of The ‘Ohana Mama. “There’s usually an activity to rush off to, but a few days a week we go straight home and can make a proper snack.”

Making bagel pizzas are the standing favorite with her kids, Cameron, 9, and Leah, 6, mostly because they can do everything themselves (and the gooey cheese doesn’t hurt, either!) They love how hands on it is.

Cooking together is something the family is doing more of.

“Leah loves to be in the kitchen with me, helping to cut vegetables, stirring bowls, she loves to get her hand dirty,” says Sarah. “They’re my sous chefs.”

“My kids, like many kids, don’t really like vegetables. I find when the kids participate in preparing and cooking their own food it helps with making it a positive experience and they usually end up eating some vegetables.”

Sarah Burns started The ‘Ohana Mama ( in 2008 to focus on family life in the islands. Her “parenting dispatches from Maui” happen while scrambling to and from swimming, gymnastics, or simply shell hunting at the beach.

Sarah Burns - Keiki in the Kitchen

Eat Well, Live Well: A Game Plan for Health with Chef Leslie Ashburn

O‘ahu-based macrobiotic chef and life coach, Leslie Ashburn, lays out a fail-safe game plan to live and feel better in the new year, one meal at a time.

Story by Leslie Ashburn
Photos and food styling by Ja Soon Kim

Now that the new year has arrived, it’s a perfect chance to set a healthful course for 2014 by reflecting on your diet and lifestyle. This year, “spring clean” early by focusing on the foods you eat and changing a few habits.

To undo the bad stuff (who didn’t splurge this past holiday season?), there are several gentle steps you can take to cleanse and detox. For the purposes of this article, this means aiding your body to release accumulated toxins and create the optimal conditions for your body’s organs to function most efficiently. The simple ways laid out for you here will naturally prepare your body and mind for success. My suggestions are meant for long-term, sustainable health — there are no magic bullets here. And, as you’ll see, cleansing can be gentle and actually quite delicious!

Diet Dos & Don’ts

First, DO take the middle path with your diet and DON’T go to extremes. Strict fasts (such as liquid-only diets) may produce short-term results. Their severity, however, often results in a yo-yo effect, sending people back and forth between overeating and not eating enough. If you greatly restrict your calories, it is inevitable that you’ll end up with a strong urge to binge. Situationally, a fast may be appropriate on a sojourn in the woods or while on a meditative yoga retreat, but for people who need to show up for a full-time job, parent, or who like to exercise, it is neither functional nor practical.

While it’s not healthy to overly restrict your diet, it is important to limit certain foods. DO avoid consumption of antibiotic- and hormone-laden animal foods, refined sugar, too much coffee, alcohol and anything containing nitrates, food colorings, preservatives and additives. If your goal is to clean up a polluted ocean, river or lake, it makes little sense to continue to dump toxins into it. In general, your best bet is to avoid anything processed. If it has gone through a factory of some kind, is in a box, a can or is pre-made, then it’s processed!

DO eat wholesome, nutritious regular meals three times per day to keep your blood sugar levels even. Eat your last meal at least three hours before you go to bed. Your liver and kidneys work their detox magic at night and need all available energy to do so. Dealing with a full stomach zaps energy from other organs, leaving you feeling tired and sluggish when you wake up.

DO switch your thinking. Sometimes overly concentrating on avoiding certain foods makes them even more tempting — like that chocolate cake in the fridge that you absolutely “shouldn’t” eat. Instead, turn your focus to adding new, amazingly healthful things into your daily diet.

The best possible diet you can adopt in order to rebalance and cleanse your body is a whole-food, plant-based diet with ingredients grown as close to the source as possible with organic farming methods. Eat this way as often as possible. This diet is easy for your body to digest, freeing up energy that would otherwise be spent trying to clean and filter your organs. It is also fills your system with good stuff — valuable nutrients, vitamins, minerals and more.

My suggestions for a whole-food, plant-based diet include: unrefined starches and whole grains, such as organic brown rice, quinoa, barley, oats, sweet potatoes, taro and breadfruit; a wide variety of vegetables prepared in different ways, including root vegetables like burdock root (gobo), round vegetables like kabocha, and hardy, dark leafy greens like kale; beans and bean products; sea vegetables; naturally fermented vegetables like kimchee or sauerkraut; and lastly, fruits, nuts, and seeds. These foods are low in calories, high in fiber, and you can pretty much eat as much as you like.

You absolutely DON’T need to deprive yourself, ever! DON’T feel that you’re going to be eating sticks and rocks, either. There is a world of incredible food out there just waiting for you to discover! In fact, Forbes rated well-crafted vegan cuisine as one of the top trends of 2013.

Food is Medicine

While eating a variety of unrefined, plant-based foods is the most important thing you can do to give your system a rest and help it rebuild, it’s also important to know how foods affect your body. After all, food is medicine!

Easy first steps include adding the following items into your diet. First, homemade soups are an excellent way to fill up, not out (avoid adding too much sodium and fat). Soups are very gentle on your digestion, which can often be taxed due to overconsumption of the standard American diet. In particular, miso soup made from “unpasteurized” or “unrefined,” organic soybeans is an excellent way to build immunity, cleanse your blood and alkalinize your system.

Limu, or seaweed, is an often over-looked food that is rich in essential minerals. It helps your kidneys function well, and aids in removing heavy metals from your body. I highly recommend certified organic, in this case.

Sauerkraut and other fermented foods aid digestion and help your liver in assimilating oily foods and fat. These are especially important for us to eat in the spring. Sour flavors are also great for cleaning out the liver, such as umeboshi plums (without MSG), and fresh-squeezed lemon juice. Other fat-dissolving foods include daikon radish and dried shiitake mushrooms.

Kale and other dark leafy greens are what I consider the secret fountain of youth. In fact, in Oriental medicine, they are associated with spring cleansing and liver purification.

Kukicha tea is a full-bodied and flavorful tea (available in your local health food store) that is alkalinizing and cleansing to the blood.

Eat, Breathe, Rest

While food is a critical component in cleansing and detoxing, it’s just one piece of the health puzzle. Just as important is gentle exercise. Activities like gardening, yoga, or going for a walk, hike, surf, SUP or swim enable you to breathe in fresh air and sweat out toxins.

Lastly, practice a daily body scrub so that your skin, the largest organ in your body, can more easily release toxins. Pamper yourself with massages. Practice meditation. Turn off the TV or close the newspaper while you’re eating your meals (your entire environment is “food”). Get ample rest to allow your body to heal from stress.

“What do I have to look forward to?” you ask. The list is long: getting along better with your loved ones, easier weight management, clearer skin, deeper sleep, better moods, more energy, reduced cravings, and protection and healing from a wide variety of lifestyle-related illnesses.

Here’s to YOUR healthful 2014!

Leslie Ashburn is an internationally trained personal chef, educator, blogger and life coach. She is a Level 3 graduate of the Kushi International Extension Program in Osaka, Japan, mastering in “Samurai Macrobiotics,” a holistic approach to well-being. She loves challenging stereotypes about what it means to eat healthy.


Tamales: Make Them At Home With Friends & Family

Photography and styling by Adriana Torres Chong
Shot on location at Cookspace Hawaii

Many of us give food as gifts over the holidays. Instead of cookies again, consider something heartier, nourishing, and filled with love: tamales. The masa dough and fillings, wrapped like little gifts themselves, are a custom dating back generations, a ritual of of gathering in the kitchen to make a cherished food eaten and shared throughout the holidays.

O‘ahu chef Adriana Torres Chong, originally from Mexico, adapted her traditional recipe to create an authentic pork tamale using local ingredients. As is often the case, there are as many tamale recipes as there are cooks to make them: sweet, savory, vegetarian, etc. If tamale-making is new to you, here is a step-by-step guide to a new tradition you can bring to your own home.

Inspired to learn more? Catch Adriana’s class, “Mexican Tamales from Start to Finish,” at Cookspace Hawaii on Saturday, October 26. Register at

View the Recipe for Local Pork Tamales With Big Wave Green Tomato Salsa


Cronut Recipe by Chef Lee Anne Wong



Photos by Monica Schwartz
“Dominique Ansel is one of the best pastry chefs I have ever known and I visit his patisserie in Soho often for my sugar fix. He is singlehandedly responsible for the half-croissant, half-doughnut ‘Cronut’ craze that has taken the world by storm. If you can’t get to NYC and wait in line for two hours for this pastry delight, here’s a quick cheat; not quite the same, but equally decadent.” – Chef Lee Anne Wong
Course: Dessert
Servings: 4 Pieces
Author: Lee Anne Wong


  • Rolling Pin
  • Plastic Wrap
  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • Electric or Stand Mixer
  • 3-inch Biscuit Cutter
  • 1/2-inch Biscuit Cutter


  • 1 Roll of Refrigerated Croissant Dough
  • 1 Cup Melted Butter (Unsalted)
  • Local Hawaiian Cane Sugar (Large Granules)
  • Vegetable Oil (For Frying)
  • 1 Pint of Kula Strawberries (Washed, Hulled, and Thinly Sliced)
  • 1/4 Cup Hawaiian Cane Sugar
  • Juice of 1/2 Lemon
  • 2 Cans of Full-Fat Coconut Milk (Refrigerated Overnight)
  • 1 Piece of Hawaiian Vanilla Bean (Cut Lengthwise, Seeds Scraped From Each Half)
  • 2-3 Tbs. Local Honey
  • Hawaiian Sea Salt (To Taste)
  • Toasted Coconut (For Garnish)


Prepare Dough.

  • Working on a lightly oiled surface, unroll the croissant dough and gently shape it into a long rectangle with a rolling pin, about 15”x8”.
  • Rotate the dough so the longer side is parallel to the edge of the table. Brush dough with a thin layer of melted butter and sprinkle lightly with cane sugar. 
  • Visually divide the dough into thirds. Fold in the left side. Brush the top of the folded section with butter and sprinkle with sugar. Repeat with the right side. 
  • The dough should be tightly folded in thirds now. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 15 min.
  • Remove the dough from the refrigerator and gently roll out again to a 15”x8” rectangle. Repeat the process two more times, refrigerating the dough in-between and after the last folding.

Prepare Coconut Cream.

  • While the dough is chilling, remove the cans of coconut milk from the fridge, flip, and open upside down. Pour off the thin coconut milk into a container and reserve it for future use.
  • Pour off the thin coconut milk into a container and reserve it for future use. Scoop the coconut cream into a large mixing bowl. Using an electric or stand mixer, whip the coconut cream until thick and fluffy with medium peaks, about 4-6 minutes. 
  • Stir in half of the vanilla seeds, honey, and a pinch of salt. Refrigerate until needed.

Prepare Strawberry Topping.

  • Place the sliced strawberries in a bowl with the ¼ C. of sugar, lemon juice, and the remaining vanilla seeds.
  •  Stir until well combined. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Shape and Fry Dough.

  • Preheat the deep fry oil to 340°F. Remove the dough from the fridge and roll into a 6”x6” square.
  • Using a 3-inch biscuit cutter, cut out 4 rounds. Cut out center holes with a ½-inch biscuit cutter. 
  • Deep fry the cronuts turning, about 2-3 minutes per side until the dough is golden and evenly cooked. Drain on paper towels.
  • Roll in cane sugar while still hot.


  • While the cronuts are still warm, whip the coconut cream back to medium peaks. Spoon onto plate and into each cronut hole.
  • Top with the macerated strawberries and sprinkle with toasted coconut.
  • Eat immediately and with gusto!

Roasted Beans and Broccoli and Szechuan Peppercorn Yogurt



Photos by Monica Schwartz
Green veggies are part of my daily diet and broccoli is an old favorite (it was the first thing I ever learned to cook for myself.). For an even healthier take on this recipe, simply serve the vegetables steamed or blanched with the yogurt dressing.” – Chef Lee Anne Wong
Course: Appetizer, Side Dish
Servings: 4 People
Author: Lee Anne Wong


  • 8” Fry Pan
  • Heatproof Container(i.e. Mason jar)
  • Fine Mesh Sieve
  • Large Pot
  • Large Bowl
  • Small Bowl
  • Whisk
  • Parchment Paper
  • Sheet Tray


Roasted Beans and Broccoli

  • 1/4 Cup Garlic Cloves (Thinly Sliced On The Mandolin 1/16”)
  • 1 Cup Vegetable Oil
  • 1 lb. Green, Romano, Or Yellow Wax Beans (Ends Trimmed)
  • 1 lb. Broccoli Florets And Stems (Trimmed To 2” Pieces)
  • 1 Tbs. Sesame Oil
  • 1 Tbs. Soy Sauce
  • 1 Tbs. Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 tsp. Cane Sugar
  • Hawaiian Sea Salt (Fine Ground)

Sesame Yogurt

  • 2 tsp. Sesame Seeds
  • 1 Cup Lowfat Greek Yogurt
  • Zest of 1/2 Lime
  • Juice of 1/2 Lime
  • Pinch of Hawaiian Sea Salt (Fine Ground)
  • 1 tsp. Local Honey


Prepare Garlic Oil.

  • Heat oil in an 8” fry pan, add sliced garlic.
  • Stir occasionally over medium heat. When the garlic chips begin to turn light golden brown, strain them out to paper towels, spreading them out (they will harden as they cool).
  • Season lightly with sea salt. Allow the garlic oil to cool to room temperature and reserve. 
  • Strain the garlic oil through a fine-mesh sieve into a heatproof container, such as a mason jar.

Prepare Beans And Broccoli.

  • Preheat the oven to 450°F. 
  • Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil (It should taste like ocean water).
  • Blanch the green beans separately for two minutes, drain on paper towels. Dry thoroughly and transfer to a large bowl, still hot.
  • Return water to a boil. Repeat the process, blanching the broccoli for 1 minute. Add to the beans.

Prepare And Add Vinaigrette.

  • In a small bowl whisk together 2 Tbs. of garlic oil with the sesame oil, soy sauce, balsamic, and sugar. 
  • Toss the hot vegetables in the vinaigrette and season lightly with salt.
  •  Spread into a single layer on a parchment-lined sheet tray and place in the oven for 8-10 minutes, until the vegetables begin to caramelize.

Prepare Sesame Yogurt.

  • Combine all yogurt ingredients in a small bowl, stir until blended. Keep refrigerated. For more kick, substitute sesame seeds with Szechuan peppercorns.


  • Serve vegetables warm with sesame yogurt and top with garlic chips.

Hawai‘i Coffee-rubbed Pork Loin with Sautéed Mushrooms, Red Plum Port Wine Sauce and Shaved Fennel



A holiday main.
If turkey is feeling too tired for your holiday table, try this alternative offered by EATHonolulu’s Chef David Passanisi. This luscious main features local farm-raised pork, perfectly showcased with Hawai‘i grown ingredients—many featured here in the pages of this magazine.
“This rub adds texture and a seasoned depth without overpowering the natural flavor of the pork. We work with fresh, local vegetables on a regular basis. We like produce-based sauces for their better intensity of flavor and great texture. What’s better, they keep your cooking healthier by skipping the butter and cream,” says Chef David.
Get tips directly from the pro himself: stop by EATHonolulu in the Gentry Design Center and ask for Chef David.
Happy Cooking!
Course: Main Course
Author: David Passanisi


  • Pan
  • Saucepan


Pork Loin

  • 30 oz. Center-Cut Pork Loin
  • 1 Bulb Fennel (Shaved)
  • Hawaiian Sea Salt

Coffee Rub

  • 4 Tbs. Fine Ground Hawai'i Coffee
  • 2 Tbs. Dark Cacao Powder
  • 1 Tbs. Coriander
  • 1/2 tsp. Clove
  • 1 tsp. Chili Powder
  • 1 tsp. Big Island Cinnamon
  • Hawaiian Sea Salt
  • Black Pepper (To Taste)


  • 6 oz. Mixed Hamakua Mushrooms (Ali‘i, Piopini, And Grey Oyster)
  • 1 Drop of Matsutake Extract
  • 2 Tbs. Chicken Stock
  • 1 Tbs. Butter
  • 1/2 tsp. Chive
  • Salt And Pepper (To Taste)

Red Plum Port Sauce

  • 4 Red Plums (Sliced In Wedges)
  • 1 Shallot (Sliced)
  • 1/2 Thumb Hawaiian Ginger Root (Sliced)
  • 2 Cups Port Wine
  • 2 Tbs. Local Honey
  • 1 tsp. Local Lemon Juice


Prepare Coffee Rub.

  • Mix all ingredients for the coffee rub together.

Prepare Pork Loin.

  • Rub pork loin liberally with the coffee rub. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Pan sear on high until brown and roast in the oven until it reaches an internal temperature of 145-degrees. Remove from oven and rest 15 minutes.

Prepare Mushrooms.

  • Warm pan with butter and sauté mushrooms on medium-high heat for 1 minute.
  •  Deglaze pan with chicken stock and matsutake extract.
  • Bring to boil and whisk in remaining butter and chives. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Prepare Red Plum Port Sauce

  • Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and cook on medium heat until incorporated, about 10-20 minutes.
  • Chill, then blend until smooth.


  • Plate pork loin with mushrooms and plum sauce, top with shaved fennel tossed in sea salt.
  • Enjoy!

Pork Tamales with Big Wave Green Tomato Salsa

Local Pork Tamale Recipe with Big Wave Green Tomato Salsa

Photography, Styling, and Recipe by Adriana Torres Chong
Shot on location at Cookspace Hawai‘i

Gather friends and family for “tamalada,” a tamale-making party, and prepare for a hands-on day in the kitchen. This great tamale recipe makes about 16 tamales; multiply as needed.


Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: pork, salsa, tamale
Servings: 16 People
Author: Adriana Torres Chong


  • Saucepan
  • Blender
  • Pressure Cooker
  • Bowl
  • Pot
  • Steamer Rack


Green Salsa

  • 1 lb. Big Wave Green Tomatoes (~2 Large Tomatoes)
  • 1/4 Maui Onion
  • 1-2 Serrano Chilies (To Taste)
  • 3 Garlic Cloves
  • 3 Cilantro Sprigs
  • Hawaiian Salt and Black Pepper (To Taste)
  • 1/2 tsp. Sugar

Pork Filling

  • 2 lbs. Local Pork Shoulder
  • 1/2 Maui Onion
  • 1/2 tsp. Hawaiian Salt
  • 1 tsp. Mexican Oregano


  • 4 Cups Masa Mix
  • 5 Cups Reserved Pork Broth (More If Needed)
  • 4 tsp. Baking Powder
  • 2 tsp. Salt
  • 2/3 Cup Lard
  • 2/3 Cup Vegetable Shortening
  • 16-20 Corn Husks (Soaked In Warm Water For 30 Minutes)


Assemble ingredients and soak corn husks in warm water for 30 minutes.

  • Tamale Recipe - Assemble all Ingredients

Prepare salsa verde.

  • Add the tomatoes, onion, serrano chilies, garlic, and cilantro to a saucepan and add enough water to cover (2-3 cups). Cook over medium heat, covered, until tomatoes soften, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat, cool, puree. Season with salt, pepper, and sugar.
    Tamales Recipe - Prepare Salsa Verde

Prepare pork.

  • Add pork shoulder, onion, Hawaiian salt, and Mexican oregano in a pressure cooker, cover with water and cook for 30 minutes or until tender. Remove pork and shred; reserve broth for masa.

Prepare Masa.

  • Combine masa mix, baking powder, and salt in a bowl. Add the pork broth, working with hands to form a soft dough. In a separate bowl, whisk lard and shortening until fluffy. Incorporate masa into the lard mix, whisk until dough has a spongy texture. Can be done by hand or using a mixer. Test by dropping a small ball of masa into a glass of water; if it floats, it’s ready.

Assemble tamales.

  • Spread 3 Tbs.of dough evenly over soaked corn husks. Fill the center with 1 Tbs. of cooked pork and ½ Tbs. of salsa verde. Fold the sides of the husks in toward the center, tying the ends if needed.


  • Line a steamer rack with a double layer of corn husks and place tamales vertically within it. Drape with a towel, then cover with lid. Steam for 50-60 minutes or until the dough peels easily from the husk. Tip: Add an inch of water to the pot and place a washed penny in the middle. The penny will rattle as the dish simmers; when rattling slows, it’s time to add more boiling water to the pot.


  • Serve warm with salsa verde. Tamales freeze well, so make quantities ahead. Buen Provecho!


O‘ahu chef Adriana Torres Chong, originally from Mexico, adapted her traditional recipe to create an authentic pork tamale using local ingredients. As is often the case, there are as many tamale recipes as there are cooks to make them: sweet, savory, vegetarian, etc. If tamale-making is new to you, here is a step-by-step guide to a new tradition you can bring to your own home.

Avocado Fruit Toast: A Recipe by Chef Lee Anne Wong


Photos by Monica Schwartz
“Avocados are one of my superfoods. I love the simplicity of their creamy, nutty flavor with a few fresh ingredients.” – Chef Lee Anne Wong
Course: Breakfast, Main Course, Snack
Servings: 4 People
Author: Lee Anne Wong


  • Grill or Cast Iron Pan
  • Small Bowl
  • Microplane
  • Paring Knife


  • 2-4 Thick Slices Rustic Multigrain or Sourdough Bread
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Large Ripe Local Avocado
  • 1 Ripe Local Grapefruit
  • 4 Kula Strawberries (Washed and Hulled)
  • 4 Leaves of Tarragon (Fine Chiffonade)
  • 4 Leaves of Mint (Fine Chiffonade)
  • A Pinch Hawaiian Sea Salt
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper (To Taste)
  • Local Honey
  • 2 Toasted Macadamia Nuts


Toast Bread.

  • Lightly brush both sides of bread with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, and toast on a preheated grill or cast iron pan over medium heat. Flip and toast for 2 minutes on the other side. Bread should have some color and have grill marks. Do not burn.

Prepare Avocado Mix.

  • Scoop the avocado flesh into a small bowl.
  • Using a microplane, zest a 1”x3” strip of grapefruit zest into the bowl.
  • With a paring knife, cut off grapefruit peel, so no pith or fiber remains. Carefully remove the grapefruit filets with the knife, working in between the membranes. Place the filets in a small bowl. 
  • Take the heart of the grapefruit and squeeze 2 Tbs. of juice into the avocado. 
  • Season with salt and pepper, then mash the avocado mixture with a fork until it’s chunky but blended.

Prepare Strawberries.

  • Slice strawberries, vertically into ⅛” thick slices.
  • Combine with grapefruit filets, toss lightly with tarragon and mint chiffonade.
  • Drizzle with a touch of olive oil and a pinch of sea salt.


  • Spread the mashed avocado on the warm grilled bread. Top each slice with the strawberry-grapefruit salad. Drizzle with a touch of honey, and sprinkle with sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Using a microplane, shave the macadamia nuts over the toast. Enjoy immediately!

Butternut Squash and Curried Kale Gratin, With Local Goat Cheese



Photo by Monica Schwartz
Sometimes you just want something comforting to eat and this recipe covers all the bases— it’s rich and delicious, but better for you because it’s fresh, local and full of great ingredients. This dish is perfect as a vegetarian entrée on its own, or can be served as a side.
Course: Main Course
Servings: 4 People
Author: Lee Anne Wong


  • 2 Bowls
  • 13”x9” Baking Dish
  • Small Pot
  • Parchment Paper


  • 1½  lbs. Lacinato Kale (Washed and Dried, Cut Into 1/8” Ribbons)
  • 3 Tbs. Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice
  • 2 Tbs. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Tbs. Local Honey
  • 1 Tbs. Curry Powder
  • 1/2 tsp. Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. Nutmeg (Freshly Grated)
  • 1 tsp. Hawaiian Sea Salt
  • 4 lbs. Butternut Or Kabocha Squash (Peeled And Seeded)
  • 1 Cup  Parmesan Cheese (Grated)
  • 8 oz. Fresh Local Goat Cheese
  • 1 Cup Heavy Cream
  • 1 Cup Half And Half
  • 1/4 Cup Unsalted Butter (Melted)
  • Cold Butter (For Greasing)
  • 1 Cup Lightly Toasted Panko Crumbs
  • Hawaiian Sea Salt And Fresh Black Pepper (To Taste)


Prepare Kale Marinade.

  • Whisk together the lime juice, olive oil, honey, curry powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt until well combined, and pour over the kale.
  • Toss, cover, and refrigerate for at least one hour, allowing the kale to begin to marinate and break down.

Prepare Squash.

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F. Cut squash into large ⅛” thick slices; a mandolin may be helpful.

Prepare Baking Dish and Assemble Gratin.

  • Butter a 13”x9” baking dish.
  • Place one layer of squash along the bottom, slightly overlapping to create a solid layer. 
  •  Add a layer of marinated kale (about two handfuls), sprinkle two tablespoons of parmesan cheese. 
  • Repeat, being sure to end with a layer of squash. Gently compress the layers.

Prepare And Add Cream.

  • In a small pot bring the heavy cream, half and half, and 4 oz. of goat cheese to a simmer until the cheese melts, whisking until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Pour the hot cream over the gratin, gently shaking the dish so it evenly distributes itself. The level of the liquid should just skim the top layer of squash. 
  • Dot the top of the gratin with the remaining 4 oz. of goat cheese.

Top and Bake.

  • In a small bowl combine the remaining ½ C. of parmesan cheese, panko crumbs, and melted butter, stirring until well mixed. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle the mixture over the gratin.
  • Create a parchment lid by cutting a sheet of parchment to fit the interior of the gratin dish. Place on top of the breadcrumbs and bake the gratin for 40 minutes until the squash is tender. 
  • Remove the lid and allow the breadcrumbs to brown, another 10-15 minutes. Remove from oven and rest before cutting at least 10 minutes. Serve and enjoy!

Keiki in the Kitchen: Working Parents Guy Hagi and Kim Gennaula Make Family Dinner

Photos and story by Ed Morita

Kim & Guy in the Kitchen

For working parents, making dinner can be the bane of the day. Conversely, it can be just the occasion needed to bring the family together to share some precious time. That’s how local TV personalities Guy Hagi and Kim Gennaula view it.

Though their schedules are hectic, they’ve got a good system down. “Monday through Friday I do the cooking,” explains Guy, who has a dinner breakin between anchoring the weather on Hawaii News Now KGMB9. Kim, now busy as philanthropy director for Kapiolani Health Foundation, helps prep then tends to the duty of getting the kids to their many after-school activities.

They experimented with theme nights: Meatloaf Mondays, Taco Tuesdays, Whatever Wednesdays, Thursday Leftovers, and Friday Free-choice. “We just try to make it fun, something the kids can look forward to and have some input on.”

Kim & Guy Cooking FreshTaco night became a tradition, a meal where the kids can interact from start to finish. “They get to choose the ingredients when we’re at the market: chicken or beef, the vegetables; they get to feel for a good tomato, a ripe tomato.” Alia, 9, likes to make the guacamole and prep the fixings, while Luke, 11, likes to cook the meat.

“At this age, they just want to get involved in any way. Whatever duties we can assign to them, they’re more than willing to do: wash this, chop that, they have that curiosity. It’s not a chore, they want to help,” says Guy.

The kids’ involvement in food is evident: Alia jokes that caviar is her favorite food, while Luke’s vote is filet mignon. Both agree on Spam musubi as a close second.

“The challenge for me as a parent is to stop being so…Type-A,” he chuckles. “Slow down and let them get involved, even though it’ll be messier. It’s okay.”

Sometimes there’s a mishap. Then, it’s pizza night.