A Passion for Maui and making every day a work of art

Hawaii foods

Camille’s on Wheels

Today I got to meet Camille!

We were in Kailua on a business trip when Marianne @DaMews mentioned Camille’s on Wheels would be behind Walgreens 11-2 off Uluniu, where we were for breakfast at Cinnamon’s. (That was a great place too) There are so many small shops in the area and I loved “Cottage” and the Antique Store next to Cinnamon’s.

Camille was serving great looking tacos and the bread pudding below looked awesome! It’s called Capirotada.

Camille had worked with Peter Merriman decorating his restaurant.

I admire her and all the Food Truck entrepreneurs. Hoping the parking situation works out in favor of these small businesses of Oahu, ASAP.

Look for Camille’s on Wheels in Kailua.

808 283-9131

Marilyn Jansen Lopes


Kula Country Farms

Maui Apple Banana Nut Bread

Today it was all about bananas.
   Our apple banana trees have been putting out plenty of bunches so before they go, I had to bake lots of beautiful apple banana nut breads. In Hawaii we have many varieties of bananas. The Williams bananas are longer like the kind we are familiar with in the mainland. Our apple bananas are short and have a unique sweet fresh taste. They are not as creamy as the ice cream bananas that are more like a custard.

The different thing about apple bananas is when the skin is turning black and you think they are pau (finished), they are still beautiful inside, not bruised at all. (Most of the time.)

These bananas appear bruised but once peeled you can see they are really nice still. Most recipes only call for a few bananas, but my recipe came from an old Maui Ladies Home Cookbook which called for 6-7 ripe bananas. Today I doubled my recipe and because apple bananas are small I used about 15 bananas.

 I sifted together
5 cups all purpose unbleached white flour
4 tsp. of baking soda
2 tsp. salt
3 tsp. cinnamon

Then I cream 4 sticks of butter with
3 cups of sugar and add 3 tsp. of vanilla.
I also add 1/2 cup of honey!

On the side in another bowl I crush my bananas with a beater blade.

I also add 8 large eggs that have been lightly beaten to the butter and sugar mixture.

I combine my wet and dry ingredients adding the bananas and mixing with a large spoon until everything is blended. Then I have my walnuts (2 cups) which I have crushed by using the thick measuring cup to pound them inside a larger bowl. You can cut them, chop them or use the food processor but this is how I have done it for years, so I like it that way.

Incorporate the nuts and add 1 cup of craisins to the batter too. Lightly oil the pans even though they are a non-stick. I do.

This batch made 8 small loaves and one very huge long banana bread equivalent to two normal  loaves, I’d say.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and bake these small loaves for only 30 minutes or until the bamboo skewer comes out clean. They cook fast.
This apple banana bread took one hour and 15 minutes to bake completely.
Wait a few minutes to cool then slip them out of the pan. I love those non-stick Martha Stewart mini-loaf pans. I have to get another one so I can do double batches. 
So here’s  what it looks like inside. It was moist but I added a little butter and my banana bread was divine.
My mother-in-law Catherine helped me by holding my book. I showed her my step by step banana bread recipe, then we stepped outside while they baked to enjoy another Maui day on the lanai just reading, listening to the birds, and very windy trades blowing as the banana bread was baking.
I want to share some beautiful plant and flower photos that I took yesterday in my yard and in Catherine’s old yard.
Catherine’s heliconia.
Our apple banana tree has about five new stalks on it right now so there’s much more to come.
Pink Plumeria


 Stephanotis vine

   And last but not least beautiful Maui. Our north shore is an awesome spot to watch the wind surfers and take in the most gorgeous views of West Maui and Molokai in the distance.


Don’t forget to vist http://www.amaryllisofhawaii.com/ for my latest designs on tees and all my books.

Thai Coconut-Lemongrass Soup

    Ever get a craving for something hot and spicy, rich and delicious too? If you love Thai food you will want to make this in your own home.
   I learned this exotic but easy Thai Coconut Lemongrass preparation from a friend.
I had stopped by their home for a moment and the aromatics were incredible!
  The coconut soup was being ladled into bowls and I was gifted with a take out container of this soup to try on my break later. It’s a heavenly, rich, heady concoction and I had to know how to make it!
My friend gave me the recipe from their Thai cookbook and I changed it to what is available.
In my book below I mention the recipe here:
    I start the day before by cooking a whole chicken in boiling water brought down to a simmer for about and hour and a half. To season that broth I always start with garlic, onion, celery and carrots chopped up and added to the water with the chicken. I add my salt and pepper during the second seasoning when I remove the bones to the side.
  This time I added a few star anise to the broth as well as a few cloves like I do in Vietnamese Pho. When the wonderful chicken broth is ready, I serve some, then bring down the heat with ice cubes to chill it for the next day.
 Now I prepare my green chile paste.
I used about 8 jalapenos, lots of fresh ginger (about 4 oz..), 3 lemongrass stalks, 6 cloves garlic,
3 TBSP. vegetable oil, 2 TBSP. sugar, 3 TBSP. fish sauce, zest of three limes and
squeeze the fresh limes into the paste.  (I did not have my kefir lime leaves.)
  I used to have a tree but we lost it.
So this substitution was fine.
   As you see I chopped up my ginger and lemongrass and carefully cut in half and seeded my chiles.Then I pop it all into the food processor for a grind. In the past I had ground it much finer in a small grinder but this rough chop (pulsed for a couple minutes) was fine.
   I add about 3 TBSP. of the green chile paste to 2 TBSP. hot vegetable oil to get the aromatics going. It smells incredible. Don’t inhale those chiles, though.
  Also be very careful not to touch your eyes or face. If necessary you can wear gloves to handle the chiles. I just use caution and the pointy sharp blade of a steak knife to get out the seeds.
   Once you get the aromatics going get your tofu and shrimp into the pot to brown in that green chile paste for a couple of minutes.
    My favorite shrimps are the tail on deveined ones in the 21-25 count. (big ones).
This time I had some small ones. (too small.) Cube the tofu before adding to the pot.
Next add 4-6 cups of the chicken broth prepared earlier. I added some of the white meat also.
  Next I add two cans of unsweetened coconut milk.
   I am ready to taste!
MMMmmmm  woooh, this is sooo ONO! I added more chile paste than usual so on a
scale of 1-5 based on hotness, I guess this one is a 4. But it’s ok for my husband and I. We
like it spicy. I won’t let my mother-in-law try this one. Not for the sensitive ones.

   Garnish with bean sprouts, mint, or thai basil.
   I also slivered a few green onion pieces for color.
Hope you try this one. You will love it.
Aloha and thanks for reading. Pad Thai is another favorite I will prepare soon. I do that
even at the cabins at Wai`anapanapa on one burner sometimes. It’s really easy too!
Feel free to ask me any questions by leaving a comment.  Here’s some beautiful pictures of Wai`anapanapa State Park in Hana, Maui, Hawaii. This is one of my very favorite places on Maui. It is wild and beautiful and really Hawaiian.
              The Black Sand Beach Waianapanapa
       The view from Cabin five.

That’s all!

Thanks for stopping by,

See http://www.amaryllisofhawaii.com/ for my books and Hawaiian Designs Made on Maui.

Portuguese Bean Soup

Aloha friends,

Here is a short version of my Portuguese Bean Soup. The long version uses a pork butt or shoulder and dried kidney beans which are soaked overnight. It is so easy to make Portuguese Soup.

I start with two TBSP. of vegetable oil and saute celery, onions, garlic and chopped carrots, as usual for nearly all my soups.

Then I add my Portuguese sausage which has been cut into coins and cut in half to brown with the veggies for about five minutes.

After the Portuguese sausage browns, I add two cans of kidney beans with the juice from the can too! Sometimes I add different kind beans (whatever is available in my pantry.) As you see this time I used black beans, and later I added 1 can pork & beans to finish.

Next I add about six cups of water to the pot. I simmer this for about an hour.
I added 1 can of tomato paste. It was a big can (8 oz.) Normally I use tomato sauce, but being the spontaneous chef, I get by and compromise with what will do the trick. Adjust the broth for thickness by adding a little more water if necessary.
1 tsp. allspice

3 TBSP. ketchup

2 TBSP. balsamic vinegar
2 TBSP. Sugar

I taste and Mmmm its coming along fine. All the flavor comes from the Portuguese sausage.

It’s a pork thing as you know, so much flavor!

To finish off the soup just about ten minutes before before serving:

Add the greens.

Usually I add watercress or shredded cabbage.
Today I had only spinach so I shredded that and added on top.

Cover with the lid to steam for ten minutes.

Then Voila!

It’s Soup.

Serve with nice steamed white rice and ENJOY!

A Portuguese Sweet bread would be nice with this to dip into the soup.

Thank you readers for checking out my Portuguese Soup. You must try this delicious recipe too.

It’s so easy that once you try it you’ll remember it for LIFE!

See also Amaryllis of Hawaii Loves To Cook “Recipes for Life.”

Hope you subscribe and I love your comments on twitter but am eager to get them started here on the blog. What do you love to eat in Hawaii? What do you want to know how to cook?

I will show you how as best as I can!
Have a favorite restaurant on Maui?

Let me know.
Here’s a sample layout from my cookbook!

A gift for you!


Coming soon: Wild Alaskan Cod on Spinach Salad with my honey vinaegrette!