Spam works in everything but dessert
THE FINAL Saturday in April approaches, bringing with it that fine spring tradition -- the Waikiki Spam Jam. If you are new to the islands, do not be alarmed. Spam is a perfectly fine food. What it lacks in elegance and charm, it makes up for in, well, pinkness. And sodium.
WAIKIKI SPAM JAM
» Street fair: From 4 to 10 p.m. Saturday
» Place: Kalakaua Avenue
» Featuring: Two entertainment stages, games, a dozen food booths, sales of crafts and Spam-themed merchandise
» Admission: Free
» Information: www.spamjamhawaii.com
It is my custom at this time of year to honor Hawaii's special relationship with luncheon meat with an investigation into the latest in Spam cooking. This is relatively easy, as the Hormel Corp. hosts an annual Spam recipe contest. Semifinals are held at state and county fairs throughout the nation, where Spam is more of a curiosity than a tradition.
One year the winner was a dish called Spam and Jam Layered Sandwich. I don't make this stuff up. With Spam you don't have to.
At the Spam Jam, find the honored meat in sandwiches, fried up as katsu and mixed in with chili, stir fries, dips and soups. Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant has especially taken the theme to heart, offering Marzen BBQ Spam, Shichimi-Seasoned Spam, Curry Spam, Spam Risotto Fritters, Wasabi Miso Spam and more.
Below you'll find one of the regional winners from last year's national Spam recipe search (check out all the recipes at www.spam.com).
In choosing this one, I kept in mind my two personal prejudices about Spam recipes: 1) Must not be fussy or complicated as this flies in the face of Spam's true nature; and 2) No desserts.
This one is neither, and looks as though it would be great pupu-party food.
Spam Armadillo Eggs
Betty Krehbiel, 2006 Kansas State Fair winner
20 large jalapeño peppers
1 can Spam Lite, diced
6 ounces cream cheese, softened
1-1/2 to 2-1/2 cups finely shredded four-cheese blend
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Halve peppers and remove seeds.
Combine Spam with cream cheese and enough shredded cheese to make a stiff consistency. Fill peppers with Spam mixture and place on glass pie plate. Bake 15 to 20 minutes, until bubbly on top. (Can be made ahead and refrigerated three or four days before baking.)
Nutritional information unavailable.
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