Hawaii is a marvelous mixture of many food types, courtesy of the many cultures that thrive there. My favorites include:
- Portuguese Sausage. I have had similar sausages made in other places, but the Hawaiian concoction is my favorite. McDonald’s serves it a a breakfast meat.
- Portuguese Bean Soup. Yummy. Cinnamon’s Restaurant is my favorite place for Portuguese Bean Soup, but Cinnamon’s is in Kailua and is popular with the locals. Expect to wait a while, particularly on weekends. Lots of places make an acceptable version. Give it a try.
- Teri beef, pork or chicken. Yeah, I know, it’s a Japanese dish, but it’s everywhere in Hawaii. I grew up munching on teri beef sandwiches after a day at the beach. Lunch wagons, fast food restaurants, and even relatively nice restaurants feature the stuff.
- Saimin is a noodle dish similar to Ramen served in a broth with lots of other stuff thrown in. My favorite place to get Saimin is Zippy’s. Zippy’s offers both sit down and counter service. Sit down and order my personal favorite, Chicken Katsu Curry Saimin. I really like the way the curry flavors the broth. A full meal for less than $8. Zippy’s has about 5 different types of Saimin and they are all good. And Cheap.
- Kalbi. Korean barbecue ribs. Yummy.
- Katsu Chicken, another yummy treat courtesy of Korea.
- Mahi Mahi. I like it dipped in egg batter and fried. It makes a good sandwich or a main course at dinner.
- Ahi in some form. Yellow fin tuna (Ahi) is served raw as Sashimi or Poki (both are available at Costco) and cooked as sandwiches and as a main course in restaurants. I like my Ahi charred rare with a nice spicy dipping sause.
You have probably noticed a dearth of Hawaiian Food. I’m not a fan, but if you’re a first time visitor give some a try. It’s definitely different. A worthwhile experience.
I tolerate Lau Lau
and enjoy Kalua Pork.
I avoid poi
Some odd American concoctions are available too. I’d avoid Spam, it’s everywhere. And Vienna Sausage too. And then there’s a uniquely Hawaiian Breakfast sure to give you a heart attack, the Loco Moco.
Two scoops of rice topped with a hamburger patty, a fried egg and gravy. It’s everywhere and I must admit I have never even considered eating one. Rice and gravy for breakfast is just not my thing.