~ Dawn Sakamoto
Hawai‘i’s clear blue waters and thriving fish farms produce a bounty of seafood that’s as healthful as it is delicious. A Splash of Aloha: A Healthy Guide to Fresh Hawaiian Seafood, a unique cookbook from the Kapi‘olani Community College Culinary Arts Department, will help readers enjoy fresh Island fish and shellfish for good health and good nutrition, too.
This beautifully photographed companion volume to the bestselling A DASH of Aloha and A Sweet Dash of Aloha includes buying and safety tips, nutritional labels and nearly 100 innovative recipes for preparing Island favorites from ‘ahi to uku, from butterfish to Kona abalone. Seafood preparation can be daunting. To guide novice cooks, A Splash of Aloha includes step-by-step photo illustrations of common fish preparation techniques. Recipes offer a variety of simple cooking methods, with a myriad of flavors from Hawai‘i and Asia to the Middle East, Mexico and Italy. Each is designed with the home cook in mind.
Hawai‘i offers a bounty of the freshest and highest quality fish. But as the ancient Hawaiians knew well, there is a season for everything. Hawai‘i law mandates a periodic fishing moratorium to protect the sustainability of our local waters. The most popular fish may not always be available, or may be out of budget.
Fortunately, the state also leads the way in aquaculture research and development and A Splash of Aloha offers recipes that incorporate the wide range of both wild-caught fish and other fresh, locally raised seafood (such as prawns, abalone and tilapia) available in the Islands.
In addition to its great flavor, there are many other good reasons to eat seafood. Fish are low in saturated fat and are an excellent source of protein. Seafood is not only a good source of numerous vitamins and minerals —vitamin D, vitamin B12, iron, calcium, iodine and selenium, among others—but is also one of the few dietary sources of the omega-3 fatty acids EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). Eating fish has been reported to help with other health conditions, including cardiovascular disease, brain function, asthma, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
A Splash of Aloha (ISBN 978-1-935690-13-9) is available for $15.95 at bookstores, other retail outlets, online booksellers, or direct from the publisher at www.bookshawaii.net. Contact Watermark Publishing, 1088 Bishop St., Suite 310, Honolulu, HI 96813; telephone (808) 587-7766; toll-free (866) 900-BOOK; fax (808) 521-3461; e-mail sales<at>bookshawaii.net.
From the depths of the clear, blue Hawaiian sea comes a bounty of seafood that has
played a prominent role in bringing Hawai‘i’s regional cuisine to worldwide fame.
A Splash of Aloha: A Healthy Guide to Fresh Hawaiian Seafood is a cookbook for those who are looking for simple, quick ways to cook a delicious dinner for the family, as well as those who would like to venture into new culinary territories.
Recipe contributors come from among the faculty and chef instructors of the Culinary
Institute of the Pacific at Kapi‘olani Community College (KCC), with “guest appearances” from well-known Hawai‘i Regional Cuisine chefs, chef instructors from the popular continuing education program at KCC and editor and food writer Wanda Adams. The cooking methods described in these pages are wide ranging, producing a myriad of flavors from Hawai‘i and Asia to the Middle East, Mexico and Italy, and every one is designed with the home cook in mind.
In addition to its great flavor, there are many other good reasons to eat seafood. Fish are low in saturated fat and are an excellent source of protein. Seafood is not only a good source of numerous vitamins and minerals—including vitamin D, vitamin B12, iron, calcium, iodine and selenium—but is also one of the few dietary sources of the omega-3 fatty acids EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). Eating fish has been reported to help with other health conditions, including:
• Cardiovascular disease
• Brain function
• Rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis
Hawai‘i offers a bounty of the freshest and highest quality fish. But as the ancient Hawaiians knew well, there is a season for everything. Hawai‘i law mandates a periodic fishing moratorium to protect the sustainability of our local waters. The most popular fish may not always be available, or may be out of budget. Fortunately, the state also leads the way in aquaculture research and development and A Splash of Aloha offers recipes that incorporate the wide range of both wild-caught fish and other fresh, locally raised seafood (such as prawns, abalone and tilapia) available in the Islands.
So bon appétit! As you gaze towards the horizon and beyond the sea—somewhere, a plate of delicious, healthy Hawai‘i seafood is waiting for you!
Fish Preparation & Cooking Methods
A Splash of Aloha: A Healthy Guide to Fresh Hawaiian Seafood includes chapters on
Seafood Safety (best practices for ensuring food safety from ocean to plate) and
Preparation & Cooking Methods. Here are a few tips:
• To assure that you’re buying really fresh wild-caught fish, follow these guidelines:
• Fresh fish don’t smell like ammonia or overly fishy. They should smell like a fresh ocean breeze.
• Fresh whole fish should have bulging eyes and bright red gills; don’t buy fish with eyes that are deeply sunken or red-rimmed.
• Keep fish cold: Buy it last on a shopping trip; keep a cooler in your car and pack it with ice (at the very least, keep the fish under something frozen); at home, put it in the refrigerator
• How long can you hold fresh or leftover fish? For cooked fish, one or two days at the most is the best guarantee of safety. If the fish is raw (sashimi, poke or a tartare-style preparation) and has been sitting out, it should be eaten within four hours. Raw fish leftovers should be cooked the next day, not served raw again, even if refrigerated. Leftover blackened or seared fish should be kept cold and reheated thoroughly the next day.
• Simplicity is the key to retaining the true taste and texture of the fish. A few tips before
• Make sure you wash your hands thoroughly.
• When cooking whole fish, rinse the fish in cold water first, then blot it dry with a paper towel.
• For fish fillets, blot dry with a paper towel before cooking. Keep your work surface dry also.
• Always make sure the sauté pan is hot before adding oil and then the fish. If the fish sticks, that means your pan wasn’t hot enough when you put the fish in.
• Don’t leave the fish in the pan after it is done. Serve the fish as soon as it is cooked to your desired doneness. Fish will continue to cook even after it is removed from the pan.
Hebi with Lavender and Grilled Watermelon
Recipe by Alan Tsuchiyama
Makes 4 servings
Hebi is an excellent fish to grill, and Chef Alan Tsuchiyama likes to eat it at a medium doneness. Hebi is a little softer textured than its cousins nairagi and kajiki and is a species that is gaining popularity with restaurateurs. This is a
great outdoor summer dish.
4 pieces hebi (4-5-oz. each)
1 tsp. Kula culinary lavender
3 T. sweet basil, chopped (divided use)
2 tsp. oregano, chopped
1 tsp. fresh thyme, chopped
2 tsp. Italian parsley, chopped
1 tsp. ground fennel seeds
1 tsp. ground black pepper
1. In a bowl, mix together the lavender, 1 T. chopped basil, oregano, thyme, Italian parsley, fennel seeds, black pepper, 2 T. olive oil and lemon juice.
2. Place the hebi in the herb mixture and gently turn to coat. Marinate hebi for about 30 minutes.
3. In a small bowl, mix together remaining chopped basil, 2 T. olive oil, balsamic vinegar and salt.
4. Place watermelon on a plate and brush balsamic mixture on both sides.
Marinate watermelon for 5 minutes.
5. Remove hebi from marinade and season with salt. Grill hebi to desired
doneness. Brush honey on hebi while still hot.
6. On a very hot grill, grill watermelon quickly until lightly caramelized;
do not overcook. Cut watermelon into 1-inch squares.
7. Arrange hebi on plates and top and surround with watermelon. Any extra
honey and balsamic marinade can be drizzled over.
‘Ono Orzo and Fish Pasta
Recipe by Carol Nardello
Makes 6-8 servings
This is a hearty fish casserole-type of dish which is never overcooked. The fish is cooked in the sauce and stirred into prepared pasta and garnished with fresh basil and grated cheese. So quick and delicious!
2 T. olive oil
1 c. onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
¼ tsp. red pepper flakes
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
¹⁄₃ c. white wine
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1 can diced tomatoes (15 oz.)
1. Prepare pasta according to package directions. Keep warm.
2. Pre-heat a large skillet on medium heat.
3. Add oil and onions. Sauté for 3-4 minutes. Add garlic, red pepper flakes and Italian seasoning, stirring well.
4. Add wine, lemon zest and juice, tomatoes, sugar and salt. Bring to a boil.
Reduce heat and add seasoned fish to pan.
5. Submerge fish in sauce and cover tightly. Simmer for 10-15 minutes or until desired doneness. Avoid overcooking.
6. Stir Italian parsley and fish with sauce into pasta and toss gently.
7. Pour into serving bowl and top with cheese and fresh basil.
*Island farm-raised tilapia is clean, fresh and mild-flavored, and versatile enough
to allow many different preparation methods. Farm-raised freshwater tilapia are
a different species than those swimming in the Ala Wai Canal, and they live in a
vastly different environment, in which water quality and food sources are carefully
managed. You can, however, substitute any mild, flaky fish in this dish.