Category: Spring 2014

Ed Kenney And The Kids Off To A Good Start

Sunday is a day many families look forward to for no work and all play. This holds true for Ed and Spanky Kenney and their keiki, Celia, 15, and Duke, 12. Theirs is a busy household and the kitchen is the hub of activity. Many would expect a huge, fancy kitchen with all the latest gadgets from award-winning chef Kenney, owner of Town restaurant in Kaimukï. Instead, it is small and close knit, just as the family itself.

Here’s the scene: 60’s rock ’n roll pumps in the background. Spanky relaxes and reads while Ed and the kids file in for breakfast duty. With just enough room to rub elbows, the kitchen comes to life with kid’s bright, enthusiastic energy. They shuffle between the fridge and prep counter.

Before heading out for a beach day, their tradition is to make waffles out of pa‘i‘ai, a concentrated form of poi (hand-pounded taro root). There is no real recipe to this causal, locally sourced dish. Simply refrigerate the pa‘i‘ai for several days, cut a 1″ slice and pop it in the waffle maker with a slice of butter. After a homemade breakfast together, they pile into the car and go.

The waffle recipe was conjured up by Duke and executed by Celia. With a little tweaking, it just may appear as a new menu item at Town. This morning the waffle was topped with banana, straw- berries, honey, and whipped cream, but it can be eaten plain, right out of the waffle maker too. Once it’s cooled it becomes firm, but retains that slight, sweet twang of fresh pa‘i‘ai. The kids also recommend using the waffle as a base for savory ingredients.

Cooking and sharing a meal has always been a focal point for this family. Spanky does most of the shopping and the kids participate in much of the cooking. Celia tends to stick to the recipe, while Duke’s love of food and cooking is more freestyle. He’s known to put together a meal with whatever is on hand in the fridge or garden. A few years back that spontaneity lead Duke to enter a cooking contest after overhearing the five minute call for final en- tries. His creation, a slice of Big Island beef, some warm pa‘i‘ai and fresh tomato, placed first to everyone’s surprise!

Clearly, the real secret to their family cooking is a pure love of delicious, local food, cooked simply and to perfection.

Photo by Adrianna Torres Chong
Photo by Adrianna Torres Chong

Letter Of Aloha – Spring 2014

Dania Katz, Publisher edible Hawaiian Islands MagazineGROW:  a simple concept that is so important to life. We can grow a community, an idea, or a single plant each step rippling long term effects along the way. Within the pages of this issue are stories of growing ideas that we hope will educate and inspire. We turn the spotlight on Kaua‘i chef and restaurant owner Ron Miller of Hukilau Lanai, who grew his love of cooking to include his neighbors and community; three entrepreneurs who are growing business by following their passion for good food (and drink!); how the garden classroom movement is helping our keiki bloom; and the art and science behind seed saving—because without seeds how would we grow anything?

The expert growers, our farmers, are having to master so much more these days in order to keep their farms viable and in the black: everything from social media to SEO, agri-tourism, and the creation and marketing of value-added products. The modern farm isn’t what it used to be; journalist Britt Yap took a closer look for us.

Exciting things truly are sprouting up at your local farms: You really need to go meet your growers! The heart of this issue is our first annual Hawai‘i Farm Guide, a statewide resource of food growers, including who they are, where they are, and what they offer. We feel so strongly about this that we’re calling for a statewide Farm Day on Saturday, May 24. Schedule this afternoon to go visit a local farm you’ve been meaning to. Meet the growers, get to know their operation, taste their food, and document it all on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram using the hashtag #EHIFarmDay. More about this on page 34.

Lastly, we tip our hat in congratulations to the winners of our annual Local Heroes awards. These are the people, businesses, and organizations in Hawai‘i that make a difference in our food scene, as determined by community vote. You’ll find the results on page 8. Please, take a moment to thank and congratulate each member of this impressive bunch for his or her important contributions.

Edible Hawaiian Islands is growing, too. Our new website just launched. I am incredibly proud of it and invite you to browse and leave your thoughts and comments. If you are so moved, subscribe! We’d love our relationship to grow into a beautiful and long-lasting exchange.

Dania Katz Signature




Dania Katz