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

Marilyn Jansen Lopes

Lily painting a gorgeous T-shirt

for seeing my tweet on Valentine’s Day about “I’m teaching How to Paint on tees 12-2 today at Ben Franklin Crafts. Bring 3 white cotton tees. I’ll show you how to paint for life”
Her daughter Lily painting a plumeria tee.
I was so surprised at how easily the girls picked up my technique which I developed over twenty-five years.
They were relaxed and we had fun which is how it should be.
I showed them how to paint Plumerias, Orchids, Roses and the wave…
Many people stopped by to observe and it was a lot of fun teaching the public on Maui.
Our island is such a great place to live, work and play.
Thanks again Dania,
and your magazine is gorgeous!
Aloha ♥

Awesome Marinara is so easy!

I love to make my own Marinara. Beautiful tomatoes, fresh garlic and big mushrooms with lots of herbs and spices give it a lot of body and flavor.
The ingredients are simple. Minced garlic, slivered onions, Extra Virgin Olive oil, butter, sliced mushrooms, tomatoe sauce stewed tomatoes or canned whole tomatoes, tomatoe paste, sweet Italian basil, and my other favorite herbs like rosemary, thyme, oregano, or keep it simple and use Italian seasoning, (a combo of all of the above).
First I crush the garlic and mince it and add it to Two TBSP. of extra virgin oilive oil and two TBSP. of butter. Add it while the oil is not too hot so as not to burn the garlic. Simmer a couple minutes while you sliver the onions.
Then slice the mushrooms. I like my mushrooms big and plump.
Add the onions to the pan with the garlic and saute until translucent, then add the mushrooms and saute a couple minutes longer.
Start adding the tomato sauce 16 oz. (2 small cans or 1 large can) and the stewed tomatoes, then about 3 TBSP. tomato paste. This is used as a thickener, so you may need to add about a 1/2 cup of water to achieve the consistency that you like. I always add some water.
Here I’ve tossed in my Sweet Italian basil and about a TBSP. of Italian Seasoning. I stir it in and let everything simmer for about an hour on low heat. Cover the pan to contain the splatters and stir occasionally so as not to burn.
At this time I like to taste it and add a touch of sugar, maybe a couple teaspoons, salt & pepper too. Usually I add fresh torn basil, but my garden was lacking so I added fresh spinach to give it some color.

Prepare your pasta water by filling a large pot with water, add a pinch of salt and some olive oil so the spaghetti doesn’t stick together. Bring it to a rolling boil and add your pasta. Cook it al dente (according to the package directions) and drain immediately after you test a strand that you have cooled. Al dente is just so the teeth can bite into it. (Perfect!)Spaghetti cooks for ten minutes.
Fresh pastas cook in a couple minutes so get to know your different pastas.
After draining the pasta I put it back into the pot and let the heat cook off any remaining water so it will be perfect, (not watery). Then it is ready to serve on a platter or individual servings with lots of delicious Marinara on top. Fresh grated Parmesan or Romano finishes it off along with a crisp green salad.

I love a nice red wine with Italian food such as a Cabernet or a Merlot.
Once you learn how to make your own sauce you will love how it comes together and you’ll feel so earthy crushing your own herbs and spices and filling your kitchen with the aromas of great cooking.
This sauce can be used for Chicken Parmesan also. I made that the next day.
Coming soon at The Artful Hawaiigirl 
Chicken Parmesan and fresh garlic bread.
Here’s the Marinara recipe in my cookbook.
Click on the image to see the full size layout!
So enjoy!

The Maui Tweetup

Liza @AMauiBlog puts it all together. She’s wearing my Taro Leaves Design!
So pretty in red.This was my first TweetUP and it was very exciting to meet so many people.We met at The Queen Ka`ahumanu Shopping Center Food Court on Maui. A great location to meet. I love our mall. It is the only open air yet covered mall I know. So refreshing and a view of the Harbor and West Maui Mountains too. We were next to the Japanese Edo Restaurant. Everyone shared businesscards and I gave out some of my books and t-shirts.
Here I am with @lamourwedding (Geanelli)
@Peterliu47 signing in and @ucsmiles.
This nice lady Yuki Lei Sugimura puts together events such as The Ulupalakua Thing! @ucsmiles (Cindy) was raised on Molokai.
@jalove (jamie) and Chris Norberg, Web Designer
We all introduced ourselves and @djsmooks arrived last. He is the one with the “Get Some ” T-shirt. Everyone had an interesting background. Then I learned that Judi Riley author of “When I Am Quiet On Maui” and “When I Am Quiet On Oahu” arrived after most of us had gone. So, Liza said a total of 17 of us had made this #MauiTweetup.
This couple Cindy and Kris @MauiByPhoto were celebrating their anniversary.
Geanelli is a wedding consultant here on Maui by appointment only.
Her company is L’Amour Wedding.
Her husband Richard Lewis was also present.
There was Dan O’Brien video marketing specialist of Mesh Media LLC. and the Maui Visitor Channel.
It was a great Tweetup! I met @raatz too!
This was really great and inspiring networking.
The Artful Hawaiigirl

A Trip to Iao Valley

One of the most beautiful places on Maui is Iao Valley. Tucked away in the West Maui Mountains is the Iao needle, which is a lava formation that appears to be a splash of molten lava covered in vegetation today. Of course the needle shape is more than likely due to erosion from wind and waters but I always imagine the lava boiling and suddenly taking a permanent shape.
Iao Valley is a wonderful getaway for a quick lunch because it is located just above Wailuku Town on Maui. Minutes from the center of commerce on Maui is a touch of old Hawaii to take us back in time and beauty.
About half way up the valley is a little park with reproductions from different cultures on Maui. Here we decided to have lunch next to the Korean building.
I wanted to go inside but my husband said no we eat in the picnic pavillions. I guess he thought that might be disrespectful. I thought it was so unique and beautiful. It looks like a Tea House to me.
My mother-in-law Catherine is Portuguese. Though she has been born and raised on Maui, she still loves a visit to Iao Valley. She would always take the children and grandchildren for picture taking in the beautiful valley.
One of her daughters had been married in Iao Valley. It is definitely a magical place. It is a natural rain forest in the middle of our island. There are trails in the back of the valley for amazing hikes.
Here is the Portuguese oven used to bake the wonderful Portuguese Sweet bread we love here in the islands of Hawai`i.
After a picture taking session we take a short walk through the park and come upon the Hawaiian Hale (house) reproduction surrounded by Coconut palms. There is a small Taro Patch.
It is shady, quiet and a lovely place to enjoy a picnic lunch. We proceed back to our vehicle so we can get to the back of the valley to see the Needle. It happens to be an extraordinary day with blue, blue skies and great puffy cumulus clouds.
Under the Ulu Tree. (Breadfruit tree). We love breadfruit here. I learned how to prepare it many years ago from an old Japanese man in Paia. I describe it in my cookbook. Amaryllis of Hawaii Loves To Cook “Recipes For Life”
The Iao stream was running low today, but at certain times a year the possibility of flash flooding is eminent so always proceed with caution. Be aware!
This gorgeous day was perfect for photos even though it was mid day. I usually never use this type of light for my images. (Too bright)
Here we are finally at the needle! Yay!
The famous Iao Needle. Isn’t it beautiful?
Well, it’s back to town to take care of business like stopping by the accountant’s office, having some keys made, a short side trip to browse through “Finder’s Keepers”, a 10,000 square foot show room full of antique Chinese furniture and modern reproductions. I love to wander in occasionally to see if anything captures me.
Aloha for now, friends.
Remember to take time to enjoy the beauty wherever you are.
And visit me often here and at http://www.amaryllisofhawaii.com/
Check out my links too for videos about Hawaii and other awesome blogs I’m following!

How ‘Bout Some Enchiladas!

Don’t these look yummy? Enchiladas are very easy to make. It is an excellent cost effective dish too. It’s cheesy, rich, creamy, spicy as you like it, and utterly fabulous when home-made.
First I like to get all my ingredients prepared. I chop an onion, tomatoes, and cilantro for later.
The corn tortillas must be limped before dipping into the enchilada sauce, so I use about a 1/4 inch of vegetable oil in the pan and heat it up til it bubbles. 
I have my grated cheddar or jack or even feta ready to go.
This time I used flaked crab (codfish flakes) but often I use just cheese, beans, onions and enchilada sauce. Shredded chicken or pork would be delicious also.
I have heated my can of green chile verde enchilada sauce and also added a crushed clove of garlic, 2 TBSP. of butter and some tomatoes to enrich the sauce. My friend and I had once tried as many enchiladas in Sun Valley, California and North Hollywood as we could in our quest to find the best enchilada. I determined that the best sauce had the addition of butter and garlic with a little hot sauce.
So, you limp the tortillas in the hot oil just for a few seconds in order to soften them up and get rid of the raw corn texture. Flip them for another few seconds and take right out to drain and pat out the oil with paper towels.
Now the tortillas are dipped into the warm enchilada sauce and then laid into the baking dish ready to be layered with ingredients.
Here I have started with a tbsp. of beans (pork & beans) can you imagine? It’s what I had on hand & worked fine. Sometimes I use black beans, vegetarian refried beans, or simply refried pinto beans. My friends used to pressure cook pinto beans on a daily basis as a staple for their vegetarian diet.
Then I sprinkle the crab, tomatoes, onions, cilantro, cheese, some hot sauce few drops, and roll them up. I continue until the pan is filled then top with more sauce and cheese.
This batch was lacking extra sauce because I only used one 12 oz. can of green enchilada sauce. Two would have been better.
Baked at 375 degrees for about 45 minutes or until bubbly. They come out tender, easy to cut with a fork, and delightful.
Garnish with fresh lime wedges and cilantro. ENJOY!
My mother-in-law had never eaten enchiladas but she really liked them. I’m a California girl originally, so we learn all these Mexican dishes by heart.
I love to cook and give my family new things to try. Hope you try to make enchiladas sometime. You can use them as a side dish to a big salad and also serve sliced mangos or pineapple.
Nice summer dish.
Aloha folks! Thanks for reading. See http://www.amaryllisofhawaii.com/ for my cookbook and all my Amaryllis of Hawaii series.

Time for a Fashion Show!

Aloha Friends,
Today I’m going to share with you many of the designs and styles I have been developing over the last year. Hope you enjoy my line of  Hawaiian Designs Made on Maui. This is actually a previous post, so I hope you enjoy! Call me at 808 280-1621 with any questions. So, what do you think?
These are some of my latest designs on Maui!
Chantelle in Red V-Neck Taro leaves Design
Orchid Hibiscus on Chantelle
Kiana in Maui Kitty T-shirt
Maui Kitty for women.
My Body Mind Soul Spirit Design
Hawaiian Quilt on Denise. 
Maikai in Ti-leaf surfer shirt
My Men’s Ti-leaf Tank design
My hand-painted designs
Cotton-Lycra Corset tops