Wednesday, October 23, 1996

Tour tastes Big Isle cuisines

Gourmands embark on a Nov. 9-10 "Culinary Tour of the Big Island" to sample, among other culinary styles, the Kohala Cuisine of chef David Reardon at The Orchid at Mauna Lani. Kohala Cuisine combines "multi-ethnic flavors including Thai, Japanese, Korean, Filipino, Vietnamese and, of course, Hawaiian."

Specialties of Reardon, who serves as the resort's director of culinary services, include pan-seared Pacific salmon in wasabi-ginger crust with ama ebi, leek-creamed potatoes with Honaunau oyster mushrooms, and Maui onion jus.

The tour features five meals at restaurants and resorts in Waimea, along the Kohala coastline and in Kona. Cost is $325 per person for airfare, hotel, ground transportation and meals.

Samples d'Europe: Free daily samplings of caviar, cheeses, coffees, espresso, pates and salmon at the New European Village boutique on the third floor, Hibiscus Court, Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center. Call 923-1777.

Spam contestant: Maui resident Faith Nakamoto combined potatoes, Maui onions, English mustard and the ubiquitous Spam into pupu morsels to win the recent Hawaii preliminaries of the National Best Spam Recipe Competition.

Her recipe advances to the national finals and a chance to win a $2,500 shopping spree.

Nakamoto's recipe follows:

Spam Nuggets

1 (12-ounce) can Spam Lite
2 medium white potatoes
2 eggs
1/3 cup finely diced onions
2 heaping tablespoons ketchup
1/2 teaspoon Colman's English mustard
3/4 cup breadcrumbs or to taste
1/3 cup canola oil or more

Grate Spam. Microwave, dice and mash potatoes. Combine all ingredients, except breadcrumbs and oil. Mix well and form into small nuggets.

Roll in breadcrumbs and fry in hot oil until nuggets are golden brown.

Approximate nutritional analysis per 2 (1/2-ounce) nuggets: 180 calories, 13 grams total fat, 3 grams saturated fat, 60 milligrams cholesterol, 390 milligrams sodium.*

Harvest Wine Dinner: Stuffed veal strip loin headlines a four-course dinner by chef Nick Sayada with wines, 6:30 p.m. tomorrow, Cascada Restaurant; $50. Call 945-0270.

Tune in: Big Island culinarians are featured in the "Focus on Agriculture" food series, 7 to 8:30 p.m. Thursdays, 'Olelo Cablevision. Call 933-3393 on Big Island.

Hawaii Regional Cuisine: A team from Alan Wong's Restaurant presents a cooking demonstration and sampling, 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, JMD Educational Center, 99-1269 Iwaena St. in Halawa Valley; $38. Call 956-8400

Seafood on the Menu: Chef Bill Trask prepares kajiki (swordfish) in a cooking demonstration and sampling, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Kapiolani Community College 'Ohi'a 118; $27.50. Call 734-9211.

Festive freebies: A colorful "Collection of Holiday Fun" brochure gives Halloween, Christmas and other holiday ideas. Send name and address to: Reynolds Kitchens, P.O. Box 1592, Dept. A-330, Chestertown, MD. 21690. Or visit the Reynolds web site:

Also, for the 85-page Williams-Sonoma Cooks' Catalog, call 1-800-541-2233. And, for the funky 22-page Tabasco Country Store catalog, phone 1-800-634-9599.

Tailgate tote: Potluck in style with Pyrex Portables insulated, zippered carrying cases for bowls and baking dishes, in various sizes and colors with accompanying hot and cold microwave temperature pacs that preserve temperature for up to two hours, priced about $30 to $40 at mass merchandising and department stores.

Kona daze: A cupping competition, coffee-picking contest, and amateur and professional recipe contests highlight the Kona Coffee Cultural Festival Nov. 1 to 11, Kailua-Kona.

Mark the calendar for the 26th annual festival, which also features a brunch, steak-fry, farm fair, marketplace, tours, parades, lei contest, ikebana displays, and Miss Kona Coffee scholarship pageant. Call 326-7820 on the Big Island.

Film and feast: It's thumbs up for a Hawai'i International Film Festival gourmet movie experience combining cocktails and dinner at the Halekulani Hotel, and the U.S. premiere of "Pilialoha" at IMAX Theater, 5 p.m. Nov. 9; $100. Reserve at 528-FILM.

KCC affair: The food service and hospitality education department of Kapiolani Community College salutes tourism at a second annual Evening of Ho'okipa, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Dec. 6, KCC 'Ohelo Dining Room; $75. Call 734-9211.

By Catherine Kekoa Enomoto, Star-Bulletin

Write to Features, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, P.O. Box 3080, Honolulu, HI 96802 or send a fax to 523-8509 or E-mail at Please include your phone number.

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