My hubby and I recently celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary! Surely a honeymoon to Kauai was in order! We had a great time on our little honeymoon. It was short and sweet, just 4 nights. Perfect getaway with my sweetheart.
As I was looking through our photos I noticed a lot of them were of food! LOL.You can tell we like to eat! I do enjoy cooking at the condo. The photo of the fancy looking tuna steak was from a dinner we had at the Hukilau Lanai. It was delicious. The grove of coconut palms is across from the condo on the mauka (mountain side). You can't see them too well in the photo but, there's a heard of tiny goats that graze there. They're pretty cute. All the beach photos were taken at Waipouli beach in front of the condo. We love that beautiful beach! Oh, and we saw whales breaching from there! Apparently whales love Kauai too!
Aloha and thanks for reading my diary!
We've been going meatless every Monday for a while now. I thought some of you may be interested in what we've been eatting...
Last night I served Ratatouille. Ratatouille is a flavorful vegetable dish that you can customize to your family's taste and what you have on hand. Here's the basic recipe:
1 Eggplant sliced
1 Zucchini sliced
1 Yellow Squash sliced
1 Grey Squash sliced
1 Bell Pepper sliced
1 White or Yellow Onion sliced
Several Tomatoes sliced
8 oz Tomato Sauce
salt and pepper to taste
Butter a large baking dish. Spread half of the tomato sauce onto the bottom of the dish.
Layer alternating slices of veggies. Sprinkle with garlic and basil. Pour remaining tomato sauce over veggies. Drizzle with olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Cover with aluminum foil Bake in 375F oven for 35 minutes or until roasted and tender. Serve with your favorite pasta, quonia or rice. Sprinkle with parmesean.
We've tried other vegetables like marinated artichoke hearts, super thin cut potatoes, asparagus, olives. Also, you don't need to be fancy with the layering of veggies....it tastes just as good if you just mix them all before baking.
Thanks for reading my diary!
Merry Christmas friends!
I hope this season finds you making happy memories with your loved ones. Sharing laughs and good times!
Here's our Christmas tree. It's one of my favorite things about the holiday. I love vintage ornaments and cute stuff the littles have made over the years. Our tree has less ornaments than usual...I like a cluttered tree LOL! Tinsel is always fun too.
Our family makes gingerbread houses at Christmas. Often they're hawaiian style with lots of aloha.This year we decided to change it up and make a gingerbread candyland. My husband and the 4 kiddos created the houses, I did the landscaping. It's great to be creative together...kids come up with awesome ideas!
Thanks for reading my diary!
I'm super happy to share with you that one of our Hawaiian papaya has blossoms...in San Diego! And blossoms mean fruit...hopefully! I LOVE papayas!
This tree was grown from a seed that I saved from a sunrise papaya. I purchased the fruit at a Kauai farmers market. The tree is almost 2 years old and is just over 5 feet high. I've been growing papayas for about five years and this is the first one to flower. I currently have 3 other trees...with luck they'll flower too.
Papayas are easy to grow from seed. They at least two weeks to germinate so don't be discouraged if you don't see a sprout right away. Once it sprouts the plant grows very fast. They like full sun to partial shade. I water mine every other day and fertilize twice a month.
Our weather tends to stay warm through November. We'll see if it has time to fruit. I'll keep you all posted as to how it does here in San Diego. Wish me luck!
We have a lot of love for kalua pork at my house. I make it often. It's delicious, easy to make and you only need 3 ingredients! I've included instructions to barbeque or oven roast. Here's what you do...
Take a 2 pound or so pork shoulder roast (also called a pork butt roast) and cut deep slits into it. Sprinkle with Hawaiian sea salt. Rub the salt into the pork. Flip the roast over and do the same to the other side. Place the roast in a heavy duty aluminum baking pan (if you're oven roasting you can use a glass or metal baking pan). Drizzle liquid smoke over the roast, using 1 teaspoon per pound of pork. Cover pan tightly with aluminum foil., make sure it's sealed real good. My husband likes to barbeque, he places the roast to the side of medium coals. A 2 pound pork shoulder will take about two hours on the BBQ. If you want to oven roast, bake the pork at 350F for 3 hours. Once the pork is done, let it cool for a few minutes before lifting off the foil. Remove and save some of the liquid. The roast should easily shred with a fork. Taste the pork and decide if it needs some liquid added back in or additional liquid smoke.
Enjoy your kalua pork! Make a Hawaiian plate lunch with 2 scoops rice, 1 scoop mac salad and kalua pork. It's also great in tacos and on sandwiches. In the unlikely event you have left over kalua pork, it freezes very well.
Thanks for reading my diary!
Here's a few more photos from our family vacation to Kauai...
As you can see we really took it easy on this trip to Kauai. On the last 5 days we went to Lydgate Beach again, it's a family favorite. The guys can fish (outside of the ponds), snorkeling and swimming is safe and it's lifeguarded! We did a little shopping at the brand new ABC store at the Coconut Marketplace, it's a short walk from the condo. There's also a Famer's Market there were we picked up more fruit and veggies. The rest of our time was spent on the beach directly in front of the condo...just relaxing. On our last morning we went to breakfast at the Tip Top Café in Lihue and had a delicious local style meal. We ordered Oxtail Soup, Loco Moco and 3 Grand Slams with Macadamia Nut Pancakes. You can't go wrong here friends...everything was great, the staff was friendly and the portions were ample!
With full bellies we headed to the airport with my son's live betta fish in tow. The TSA guys were super cool and joking about the fish. We had a pleasant flight home to San Diego on Alaska Air. The fish arrived safe and sound :).
Thanks again for reading my diary!
Feeling great with jet lag pau, it's a good day to share with you some photos from our recent vacation to Kauai...
These photos were from our first four days on the island. We spent an afternoon relaxing on the beach in front of the condo, went to the Farmer's Market at Kauai Community College, had fun at the Kamalani Bridge Playground and enjoyed a day snorkeling and swimming at Lydgate Beach park.
I'll share more photos with you in a few days.
My blueberry bush has been super happy this year! It's grown a lot of delicious berries. I love pineapple upside down cake, so I thought I'd change it up a bit with blueberries. The cake turned out awesome! And it couldn't be easier...
You'll need one box of yellow cake mix, 2 tablespoons butter, 2 tablespoons brown sugar and 1 and 1/2 cups blueberries. Preheat your oven to 350F. Melt butter in 9 inch cake pan by placing it in the oven for a minute or two. Sprinkle brown sugar over melted butter then top with blueberries. Prepare cake batter according to the directions on the package then pour the batter over the blueberries. Bake 24-29 minutes. Cake is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let the cake cool for 10 minutes before carefully flipping it over onto a large plate.
The butter, brown sugar and blueberries before the cake batter is poured over.
This is what the cake looks like after it bakes...your house is going to smell heavenly!
Thanks for reading my diary! I hope that you enjoy the cake recipe!
I saw a recipe a few weeks ago for Passion Fruit Bars. They looked delicious and I've been homesick for Kauai. Perfect timing for trying a new recipe! It called for fresh passion fruit. I went on a hunt...no luck. I did find Hawaiian Sun brand Lilikoi Passion beverage but, with only 3% fruit juice I knew it wouldn't pass in this recipe. So, when I walked past a bottle of Papaya Delight with 100% fruit juice I knew what I was going to make...Papaya Bars!
I saved the Passion Fruit Bar recipe for another day. The recipe I used to make the Papaya Bars is similar to the Lemon Bar recipe in The Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook. I've made this recipe a gazillion times. Here is how I tweaked the Lemon Bar recipe to make tasty Papaya Bars...
1/3 Cup Butter
1 Cup Sugar
1 Cup Flour
1 Cup Papaya Juice
1 Tablespoon Flour
1/4 Teaspoon Baking Powder
Beat butter and 1/4 cup of the sugar. Mix in the 1 cup flour until crumbly. Press into the bottom of an 8"x8"x2" baking pan. Bake in 350F oven for 15 to 18 minutes or till just golden.
Meanwhile, gently boil papaya juice in a small sauce pan on a cook top till reduced to about half. You should have 1/2 cup of yummy, sweet , thick papaya goodness.
Combine the egg, remaining sugar, 1 tablespoon flour, baking powder and papaya. Beat well until thoroughly combined. Pour over hot baked layer.
Bake in 350F oven for about 20 minutes more or until lightly browned on the edges and the center is set. Cool on a wire rack. Cut into bars and enjoy! :)
Cooled off and ready to cut into bars.
Here is the papaya juice I used, it's locally made here in San Diego. And my laundry...keeping it real for you guys! :)
I hope that you like the papaya bars and thanks for reading my diary!
It's been very rainy and chilly in San Diego! It's hard to complain about the weather here...so I won't :) But, geez we got a ton of rain this week!
We're trying to start this new year out right, so when the sun peaked out this weekend...we headed to the beach! At 64F we didn't frolic in the waves, though we saw a few brave keiki splashing about. And plenty of surfers in full suits.
We had lunch at our favorite pizza joint, Filippi's Pizza Grotto in Imperial Beach. Imperial Beach is about as south as it gets in California. It's a little beach town south of San Diego, Just a couple miles down the road from Coronado. After a delicious meal we decided to take a walk down the pier. It felt so nice to feel the ocean breeze and see the sun glistening on the Pacific! It was almost warm :)
Best wishes to you for a "warm" day no mater where you are! Aloha!