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5 Food Items From Hawaii I Can’t Live Without

I remember when I was in high school and wanted to get the heck out of Hawaii. I actually wanted to move to California or Arizona for college but thank gosh I did not! I just think about the differences in cuisine between Hawaii and those places and NOPE, the diversity of Asian and Hawaiian food here is what fills and fuels my heart and soul. And because of that, I am so thankful for having stayed in the islands. Here are my five food items from Hawaii I can’t live without.

1. SPAM

I know all about the controversies with SPAM but tbh I don’t care. It is a delicious snack when prepared and eaten as a musubi (SPAM and rice wrapped with seaweed). It is also great during all meals of the day with some rice, eggs, and furikake (seaweed seasoning that you sprinkle on rice). If you are in Hawaii you should try it once, I promise it tastes just like meat.

2. Poke

No, poke does not have an accent above the “e” (idk what other states are doing but if you are going to replicate Hawaii’s dishes at least spell them correctly). My ALL TIME FAVORITE poke is California poke from Foodland. It is mildly spicy with different textures from the ahi, imitation crab, and avocado. This always hits the spot for me, not once was I ever disappointed by this.

3. Tropical fruit

In my backyard on my home island, I have papaya, mango, star fruit, and apple bananas growing. I could literally walk outside and pick my snack and it just tastes so delicious and so fresh.

4. Laulau

This is my all-time favorite entree at a party or a Hawaiian luau because it is so flavorful and it is so satisfying. Laulau is pork (or with beef), fish, and fat wrapped in taro leaves which are then wrapped in ti leaves and steamed in an underground oven and left there to cook all day. So basically a crock pot but underground. The pork or beef gets so tender and the taro leaves absorb all the flavors too. If you have the opportunity to try this at a luau, you should, it’s amazing!

5. Ichiban Ramen

I recently went to Colorado and went into a Walmart only to realize they had a limited supply of ramen and did not carry the ramen I am used to. Ichiban Ramen is so different than other packaged ramens I have ever had. The broth flavor is fantastic and I encourage you to try the original flavor with some added kimchi to it. That is my kind of comfort food.

If I were to move to the mainland after college, these are the things that I would miss the most. Also, if you are new to Hawaii, you should really try these food items. They may seem intimidating but they are so good I promise!

Mariah is 21-years-old senior at Hawaii Pacific University, majoring in Mass Communication concentrating in Advertising and Public Relations and minoring Marketing. On her free time, she likes to join extra-curricular activities at HPU, go to the beach, and hang out with her friends and family.
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