On a recent search of all things local in Honolulu, Chef Debbie Thomas of Dinner is Served RI joined us for a visit to the Honolulu farmer’s markets to see what was fresh for our planned hook-to-table ahi dinner. Having already determined the main protein, she was looking for complements and recommendations straight from the source.
With markets all over the City on different days there’s never a shortage finding fresh ingredients. We hit the Honolulu Market on a Sunday and promptly met the Publisher of Edible Hawaiian Islands, Dania Novack-Katz, who graciously pointed us to all sorts of delectable goodies at the market while handing us a couple back editions of her gorgeous magazine. (We confess to having already fallen in love with a copy our hosts had previously provided.)
Dania’s love of all things local to the islands flows through the pages but there she was representing both the market and the vendors welcoming all who came to the market. It’s an example of the friendly information and recommendations we witnessed no matter where we went on Oahu. In this case, Dania recommended a persimmon salsa for our ahi meal and pointed to a few choices in a nearby vendor. Persimmons, we learned, are either tomato shaped with a firm skin or larger and acorn-shaped. For general eating, she recommended we go for the tomato size and shape Fuya persimmons which grow all year round in Hawaii’s tropical climate. (The larger persimmons are known to be an acquired, astringent taste that will pucker your tastebuds!)
At the market we found local honey and jams, artisanal breads, fruits and vegetables, avocados the size of pineapples and giant basil, taste testings of local wine, beer and coffee. Asian pears were a huge hit with their crispness a perfect complement to cheese boards for snacks. Multiple bakeries offered the obligatory sweets but also unique breads and cookies. And fresh flower stalls brought bright cheerful color to the market of 25+ stalls.
So back up to our home away from home we went with the bounty of great ingredients to create a memorable ahi dinner.
For a complete list of Farmer’s Markets on Oahu, https://www.hawaii.com/oahu/shopping/farmers-markets/
For Edible Hawaiian Islands, https://ediblehi.com/
Don’t miss Part 3 of An ONO AHI Journey – the Recipes as we use our 4-pound ahi for dinner!