Morning gather

27 04 2022

I can’t help it. Every morning for years I have gathered kou flowers, and when the calamansi is bearing I pick those, too. I string the flowers into lei, and I make marmalade from the citrus. Today’s lei is for a friend who is leaving the Islands to work in Arizona. His last concert for a while that he will conduct here—the University of Hawaii Nā Wai Chamber Choir—is tonight. I will put up a couple jars of marmalade for later gift giving.

Be well. Your friend,

Rebekah





Who doesn’t tire of flowers?

12 04 2022

 

Kou
Lilikoʻi

I am lucky. Brilliant orange and purple blossoms from our kou tree and passion fruit lilikoʻi vine greet me every morning with the promise of flower lei for dearest friends, and fruit to eat and juice. The lei will dry nicely to a burnt orange and resemble  paper, lasting a while. I will use the lilikoʻi juice in dessert and beverage recipes.

Gratefully yours,

Rebekah





Stepping out again

18 02 2022

With pandemic numbers decreasing, I ventured out of my bubble yesterday to socialize by attending two in-person gatherings —a belated birthday lunch with my friends Lori and Yo, and a meeting of the Koʻolauloa Hawaiian Civic Club.
Lori, a foodie and of a former restaurant conglomerate, knows the chef at Artizen and treated Yo and me with gift cards she wanted to use. I first met Lori at a Reiki workshop long ago where, I think, she took on the role of sous chef for the meals. I honestly don’t recall how I met Yo, perhaps through Lori, but we both spent our childhood in Wahiawa.

Me, Lori, and Yo

 

In the evening I attended the Koʻolauloa Hawaiian Civic Club dinner meeting. It was very interesting with several guest speakers informing via Zoom on a large video screen.

Guest speaker on Zoom

Approximately a dozen club members were very polite, donning face masks except when eating and sitting five- or six-feet apart, although I am pretty sure we were all vaccinated. For a special treat, Jolene and Haleaha taught us how to fashion roses out of ti leaves.

Ti leaf rose

 

 

Some members of the Koʻolauloa Hawaiian Civic Club who braved an in-person meeting and removed their face masks only for this image. I am not in the picture because I’m the photographer.


Someone doled out thoughtful parting gifts of COVID-19 Antigen Home Tests and hand sanitizer. I love my Hawaiian civic club.

Be well. Love,

Rebekah





ʻInamona my way

15 09 2021

The Pukui-Elbert Hawaiian dictionary defines ʻinamona as “n., Relish made of the cooked kernel of candlenut (kukui) mashed with salt (perhaps a contraction of ʻīnaʻi momona, sweet garnish).“

I read several recipes and how-to’s before coming up with my method. The process is tedious and no wonder that it is expensive to buy, if you can find it, and why Islanders revere it at luaus and pāʻina.

Fast forward from gathering the fruit that has fallen from the tree to the ground, tossing out bad ones in a float test, peeling off two layers of tough skin, and drying the nuts with their hard shells still on. This step takes days in a dehydrator; I used my closed conventional oven with only the oven light on.

When after many days the kukui nuts looked brittle, I cracked them open one at a time using small tongs to hold the nut and a hammer. Practice makes perfect. Ha!

Next is digging out the nut meat with a paring knife carefully so as not to injure. Tedious, but I wanted every last bit. The yield went into a large mixing bowl, and I chopped it all up with an ulu knife.

Chopping up raw nut meat. You could also pulse  in a food processor.

I roasted the ’inamona-to-be in a wide frying pan on top of the range on medium-low until golden. Stir constantly to avoid burning, while picking out any remaining pieces of hard shell.

Use a wide frying pan
Stir constantly to avoid burning
Look for this golden color

Turn out into another container to cool. When cooled, add salt a little at a time to taste, then store in an airtight container and refrigerate. Voila, ʻinamona! There is a Hawaiian food condiment. Just an IMPORTANT WORD OF CAUTION: ʻInamona is a laxative, so eat it sparingly!

Be well.

~ Rebekah





Keeping it simple

15 03 2021

Thought I’d keep it simple this morning, showing the many faces of the red hibiscus blooming on the hedge. I brewed a cup of tea with the petals. The liquid is a pretty cyan blue color! Enjoy!  ~ Rebekah

🌺

 





Changing times

9 02 2021

Quoting my friend Kalei Nuuhiwa:

“Weʻre officially out of Makahiki as Kaʻupenaomakaliʻi is moving to our zenith shortly after sunset and begins to dump all the Makahiki constellations out of the net. We end Kāʻelo this week and move into Kaulua who are all ruling across the night sky and the wicked weather we are going to be experiencing.

“新年快乐 (Xīnnián kuàilè), Gong hei fat choy, & Gong xi fa cai on Thursday Hawaiʻi time and Friday China Time. Happy Year of the Ox!”

Lion dance

 

Traditional Chinese festival food—zoong and gao

Enjoy these changing times. ~Rebekah





Hello 2021

2 01 2021

Hello studio fans,

No resolutions, no affirmations. This first post of the new year is more like a personal inventory—a pause to take stock of my likes and what brings me joy, as well as my wishes.

Just looking around, I see I like flowers and fashioning lei. I like to garden and grow food. Cook food, bake fruit pies. Play music, sing. I like to play with my dog; I know he understands English, he’s just not able to speak it. I like to create, as in making art, I like to write and make photos.

I enjoy visiting with our two granddaughters and hope I can be a good example for them.

I enjoy connecting with friends and relatives, remotely at this time. I look forward to a time when I can see them in person. How will we have changed?

And as for my wishes, but no promises, I wish to be kind. a good listener, an understanding mate, lighter all around.

Stringing kou flowers into a lei

Sweet potato stems peeled and prepped for cooking. Tasty!

Mountain apple pie

At the Yamaha

JJ the family dog

My most recent oil sketch with red and green complements

Our moʻopuna

 

Happy New Year!

All the best,

Rebekah








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