web analytics

SITA Musubi

Thought Minnesota’s own Hormel SPAM® was the quintessential mystery meat-in-a-can? Well enter Australia’s answer to that since 1936, OX & PALM® SITA Camp Pie Luncheon Loaf. Cheers, Moyte!

I learned about SITA upon my recent visit to Fiji Market & Curry Kitchen out in Kahuku on the North Shore of Oahu, where they import groceries that are popular with Fijians. And a sizeable section of that are canned meats produced in nearby Australia, including Corned Beef, Corned Mutton (domesticated sheep) and of course this, Ox & Palm SITA.

When I seen the name “SITA”, it immediately struck my curiosity, so I asked Rajeev Singh, the owner of Fiji Market what it was, and he explained that SITA is very similar to SPAM in both taste and texture. To which I was like, “NO WAY!”, and ended up buying a can to try, hence what we’re doing today!

Come, we go spock da’ label…

Retyping it, OX & PALM (since 1936) SITA Camp Pie Luncheon Loaf ingredients are: WATER, MUTTON, BEEF LIPS, BEEF TONGUE MEAT, WHAT STARCH, WHEAT GLUTEN, SALT, MSG, HYDROLYZED VEGETABLE PROTEIN (WHEAT), SODIUM NITRITE, NATURAL FLAVOR, HYDROLYZED PALM KERNEL OIL, ARTIFICIAL FLAVOR, XANTHIUM GUM, CITRIC ACID, PRESERVATIVE (SODIUM BENZOATE).

OK, they’re DEFINITELY trying to reduce the world’s human population with this stuff. “Natural flavor”, and then counteract that with “Artificial flavor”? JEEZ! WTH!!!!!!!!

Being from Australia, you’d think there’d be Kangaroo, Wallaby, Wombat, Rattlesnake and Crocodile meat in SITA, but nope. Just good ‘ole Mutton, beef lips ‘n tongue meat. lol

At 350mg (15% RDA) per 2 oz. serving, the sodium in SITA is lower than I expected, whereas the same 2 oz. serving of SPAM Chorizo flavor has a whoppin’ 590mg (25% RDA).

Note, I actually bought this can from Micronesia Mart, on the corner of Kapiolani Blvd. and Kalakaua Avenue, right across the Hawaii Convention Center, where it turned out cheaper at $3.39 vs. Fiji Market where it was $4.89/can. Which per 11.5 oz. (cylindrical) can, is pricier than a 12 oz. (box-shaped) can of Hormel SPAM when the latter is (usually) on sale.

Unpacking the steel (not aluminum) double-lidded round can of Ox & Palm SITA “Camp Pie Luncheon Loaf”, it indeed is a pie-shaped luncheon (meat) loaf, complete with the congealed fat you find in canned corned beef. And it kinda’ smells like canned corned beef, with definitely a hint of mutton to it (sheep, or even similar to lamb).

The net size of the 11.5 oz. “Camp Pie Luncheon Loaf” taken out of the can is 3¾” Diameter x 1¾” Depth (or height, or thickness, take your pick).

Now to contemplate how I’m going to slice it, which I could have gone down vertically for a rectangular shape, but that would be boring. Nah, I rather go horizontal to preserve SITA’s round can shape and fairly large diameter in size. This will certainly be be an interesting Musubi!

I tried a small nibble straight out of the can before pan-frying it, and it’s pretty gross, mainly because of the congealed fat. Like SPAM, ALWAY PAN-FRY SITA before eating it!

Next it gets pan-fried, where I’m looking at that thinking, “I am REALLY TAKING ONE FOR THE TEAM on this one!” lol

Huli da’ SITA ovah and fry da’ odda’ side, ‘den add some teriyaki to coat and caramelize for added local style flavah for da’ Musubi.

A side note on the Teriyaki sauce: for the life of me I couldn’t find the sugar in my pantry. So I used the next best thing I could find, which was what? A jar of Hawaiian Sun Guava Jelly, and you know what? The Guava Jelly as sweetener was ROCKIN’ my Teri’ sauce! Dude, MEAN, cuz!

Introducing the Ox & Palm SITA Musubi Rice Maker, version 3.12.16.

Like a gas engine (either piston or jet), COMPRESSION is a key stage of the process. Where here you use the can opener-removed lid from the OX & PALM SITA can to firmly press the rice down within the can’s cylindrical wall to make your Musubi rice, shaped for the meat that was in it. And voila!…

Whoomph, there it is. Small ‘kine rice action stuck to da’ lid that I used to compress it, but ah, minahz.

The pan-fried ‘n teriyaki-glazed SITA puts the SMACK-DOWN on the can-formed musubi rice. BAM! lol

Wrap ‘dat buggah wit’ Nori and b-b-b-b-B-BAM!!!

I actually debated which way to wrap the Nori, thinking of either going around the perimeter like a pie crust, or doing some funky cross-hatching using thinner strips, but settled with a simple gift box looking Nori X-wrap. Remember, you heard that here first on The Tasty Island! lol

You can’t really tell from the photo, but believe me, this SITA Musubi is HONKIN’ HUGE! Imagine the size of a can of PALM Corned Beef, turned into a Musubi. Brah, that’s one THICK @SS slab of “meat” on that likewise big @ss slab ‘o rice!

And? Dang, it really does “kinda” taste like Hormel SPAM®! You can definitely tell there’s mutton in there, while otherwise, it tastes more like pork than beef, defying what the main ingredients on the label says are Mutton, Beef Lips and Beef Tongue Meat. Mmmmm, yum, doesn’t that combination sound DELICIOUS?!

The pan-fried SITA also has good texture, being at least somewhat fibrous like SPAM with a pleasant meaty “chew”, and not “cheap hot dog” mushy like TREET.

Back to its flavor profile, it’s pretty salty, yet not overbearing. Just right to compliment the white rice. Again, it’s definitely “mystery meat” in flavor, way more than SPAM already is. However if you’re already a SPAM fan, you’ll definitely dig Ox & Palm’s SITA. Very close in flavor, albeit with that somewhat game-like hint of Mutton (sheep) added in there.

That all said, SITA definitely works as a stand-in for SPAM for a Musubi, and the Teriyaki glaze totally kicks it up in great ways.

To finish up, let’s give Ox & Palm SITA a fair taste without the Nori and Teriyaki sauce masking it, sampling it the standard local breakfast way as SITA, eggs ‘n rice!…

Yup, she go. No can go wrong, either as one musubi, or wit’ eggs ‘n rice. Totally Australia’s answer to SPAM.

Summing it up, I give Ox & Palm SITA Camp Pie Luncheon Loaf 3 SITA Musubi. FWIW, and more importantly, what it’s MADE OF, pretty good stuff! Just make sure you pan-fry it first!

If you see a can of SITA on the store shelf, pick one up just to try it. Or give it to someone as a gag gift, with a note on top that says, “Tastes like SPAM!”. lol

After that Gamara-sized SITA musubi, time for this…

ZZZZZZZZZZ

The Tasty Island related links:


Vegemite

Advertisements

19 thoughts on “SITA Musubi

  • March 12, 2016 at 9:18 pm
    Permalink

    Damn. I think you just changed the food spectrum of a continent and five Polynesian island groups.  And I’m not kidding. And the use of the can to shape the rice was genius. How come you neva cut out the bottom?

    Reply
    • March 13, 2016 at 7:24 am
      Permalink

      Pat,

      While he grew up eating the stuff, Rajeev, the owner of Fiji Market who is originally from Fiji said he’s NEVER seen SITA made into a Musubi either there in Fiji or here in Hawaii. Which I was very surprised. So again, you seen it here first on The Tasty Island! Now to get all those who start making and selling “Tasty Island’s SITA Musubi” cut me royalty checks. At least 5%! lol

      I did remove both the top and bottom lids of the can so I could easily push the can-formed musubi rice out from underneath. Worked like a charm. The massive hockey puck-shaped rice also suprisingly held together quite well as I took each bite, not falling apart at all. The X-wrapped Nori pattern also provided the perfect “meat to rice to nori” ratio, and kinda’ helped hold it all together. Because you know, those “little” things matter when it comes to Musubi! lol

      If you can’t find find OX & PALM SITA Camp Pie Luncheon Meat on Kauai, next time you fly over to Oahu, get it at Micronesia Mart, conveniently located right across the Hawaii Convention Center near Waikiki and Ala Moana. Just $3.39 per can. (I checked all the major supermarkets, including DQ, Times, Foodland and Safeway, and they don’t carry it.)

      Oh, speaking of mystery meats, Don Quijote and Times on Oahu still regularly stock Goteborg Sausage. They’re about $17 for a whole MASSIVE sausage. I guess the demand is there for making Kauai style “UFO” Musubi!

       

      Reply
      • March 13, 2016 at 8:16 am
        Permalink

        You really need to pack a pair and take them over to The Fiji Market so the owner can sample.

        And that Micronesian Market is very close to our Waikiki place. A fun project.

        Reply
        • March 13, 2016 at 9:24 am
          Permalink

          Pat,

          I will certainly do that, and take a few “Tasty Island SITA MUSUBI” to Rajeev next weekend on Saturday (like just about every place else in Kahuku, Fiji Market is closed on Sunday due to respect for the large Mormon community there).

          I think SITA MUSUBI would sell really well in his Kahuku store. TOTALLY marketable, especially out there in “touristville”. In fact, I have an idea!…

           

          Reply
  • March 13, 2016 at 2:19 pm
    Permalink

    Pomai,

    Ox & Palm SITA Camp Pierce Luncheon Meat is regularly eaten and a staple in Fiji, Tonga and Samoa.  As I told you, I have it in my pantry. You can purchase it here in Waianae at the Waianae.Grocery Store. You will most likely find it anywhere you have a large population of people from those three islands.

    Reply
    • March 14, 2016 at 5:12 pm
      Permalink

      Ken,

      Have you ever been in Ono Polynesian Market out there Waianae? One Yelper really liked their Palusami, which is corned beef and onions steamed in Taro Leaves. They serve a variety of hot prepared Samoan dishes.

      Reply
      • March 16, 2016 at 2:06 pm
        Permalink

        Pomai,

        No I haven’t stopped in to look around. Normally when I am in that section of town it’seems because I’m at post office, NO. One Chinese Restaurant, Tacos and More or Sun Sushi restaurant. I’ll have to stop and walk through to see what they have. There is no doubt in my mind I’ll find shelf space stocked with New Zealand and Australian canned food products.

        BTW, Nadine Kam, Star Advertiser stopped in an did a nice write up on A T Polynesian Market in Wed 03/16/16. She specifically highlighted the Samoan and Tongan specialties of oka ia  (fish salad), fish marinated in coconut milk with diced tomatoes and cucumbers. It’s closest relative is Tahitian poisson cru but more an American Samoan equivalent of poke. American Samoan palusami, equivalent of Hawaiian laulau. You can get it taro leaves only or with meat (corned beef and turkey tail).

        Nadine also did a very fine write up one Coquito’so Latin Cuisine Restaurant in Waianae giving it a solid 3 stars across the board. One of the leeward sides hidden gems. Nadine indicated she would be visiting Valentina’s Ristorante west’s side Italian restaurant and pizza on another visit.

        Reply
        • March 19, 2016 at 4:08 am
          Permalink

          Ken,

          I can’t find that article Nadine Kam wrote on A T Polynesian Market in Waianae (there’s two of those types out there?). Please send the link.I’m curious what got her on a west-side dining quest. She’s a VERY quiet person in person. I’ve dined with her several times at tasting events, and she barely says a word at the table. Shy maybe? Still, her food columns are always simple, yet BRILLIANT! That said, Nadine’s like the food critic version of Governor Ariyoshi: “Silent but violent” (in her critique). lol

          Now a Turkey Tail Palusami sounds AWESOME! I’ve never seen a Turkey Tail Laulau, but that sounds ono, too! Steamed Luau leaves go so great with FATTY meat!

          Reply
          • March 23, 2016 at 4:30 pm
            Permalink

             
            Pomai,
             
             
            A T Polynesian Market and Ono Polynesian Market are one of the same. Yelpers got the name wrong as they copied the advertisement banner saying “Ono Polynesian Foods”. A T Polynesian Market is right and proper name as reported in Honolulu Star Advertiser newspaper article by Nadine Kam.
             
            Nadine Kam did the food write up in the Honolulu Star Advertiser Wednesday March 16, 2016. She was originally doing secret lunch at Coquito’s Latin Cuisine Restaurant in Waianae which she gave a solid 3-stars to. The owners of Coquito’s also own and operate Valentina’s Ristorante which Nadine Kam indicated she will come back to review another time. Coquito’s Latin Cuisine Restaurant is one of the Leeward Side’s hidden gems and is crowded most of the time.
             
            I would guess Nadine Kam stopped at the traffic light and saw A T Polynesian Market and on a whim turned into the parking lot to see what she had found. She did a great quick review of the hot take-out counter and posted a photo of one of the owners on the same page of Coquito’s Latin Cuisine Restaurant review.
             
            Pomai I think you got it wrong about Turkey Tail Palusami. Nadine Kam wrote in her article; “You can get it taro leaves only or with meat (corned beef and turkey tail).” which my interpretation is a combination of corned beef and turkey tail not just straight turkey tail.
             
            Today I did go into A T Polynesian Market to look around. Inside it is shaped like an upside down letter L with canned goods on outer walls and hot food counter in center plus in the L leg bulk produce and a very clean commercial kitchen. The young lady at the counter was very nice and everyone coming in seen to know each other. No Ox & Palm SITA Camp Pierce Luncheon Meat or Globe Corned Mutton on the shelfs but plenty of other stuff. They also had on wall above door just about every NFL football team logo new baseball caps for sale. Quite a beer and liquor selection!! I splurged on a new NE Patriots logo ball cap, canned squid and canned abalone. I will definitely shop at this market.
             
            BTW; King Arthur Flour website has the high quality Japanese made Zojirushi Indoor Electric Grill 1,500W Model # EB-DLC10XT for $119 which is very hard to find, Mutual Trading Company Inc. out of Manhattan, NYC better known as MTC Kitchen has the Zojirushi Induction Pressure Rice Cooker & Warmer ETL 5.5 Cup NP-NVC10 for $470 and the Japanese Iwatani Portable Butane Stove 35FW 15,000BTU for $90.  
             

          • March 25, 2016 at 8:19 am
            Permalink

            Ken,

            That’s what I thought. I remember when I visited there while out in Waianae a few years ago, it was A T Polynesian Market with that “Ono Polynesian food” banner in front. And I can’t see two of those types of markets surviving in the same area.

            Regarding the Samoan signature dish, Palusami, believe or not I’ve NEVER EVER tried it. Ever. I had the opportunity to try it at the Polynesian Cultural Center, but as I said, my appetite wasn’t there at the time. Seems easy enough to make, which I’ll try next time I have Luau (taro) leaves (I plan on making Squid Luau again soon).

            Corned Beef and Turkey Tail sure is an interesting twist on the Hawaiian Laulau with Pork, pork fat and butterfish. And a Laulau is NOT a Laulau without those three “ingrediments”!

            Next time I cruise up North Shore (maybe tomorrow), I’ll stop by Fiji Market and get a can of the Globe brand Corned Mutton. I’m thinking of doing something similar to how French style Rack of Lamb is prepared, incorporating garlic, rosemary and mint jelly. Should be interesting!

            Canned squid? Now that sounds GROSS. Why? Just get it fresh. Speaking of which, Diner E’s been hittin’ it good lately, catching lots of Tako (Hawaiian Octopus) at his secret diving spot. Last weekend he said he got a 4 pounder! That is one HUGE Tako!

            You’re not gonna’ believe this, but I “lost” my precious Zojirushi Induction Heat Rice Cooker to a kitchen mishap that I just do NOT want to talk about (nothing dangerous or anything, just stupid). For the interim until I find a sweet deal on an exact replacement, I SCORED a Tiger brand Micom 5-cup rice cooker in practically new condition (only used TWICE!) off Craigslist from a retired couple for get this: $20! That Tiger model’s MSRP is $89, with lowest price on Amazon around $60. Much to my delight, it cooks all my rice types (white, brown and Genjimai) about 98% as good as the Zojirushi Induction Heat cooker. As importantly, it keeps the rice in great condition in WARM mode for 24 hours easily, same as how the Zoji’ IH model was. $20 for an almost-new Tiger rice cooker! Score!

          • March 25, 2016 at 4:00 pm
            Permalink

            Pomai,

            Because I was in AT Polynesian Market I could not walk out the door without buying something. Got to support local! The canned squid is whole  California squid in natural ink with soy sauce. Once I open the can I’ll figure out what I’m going to do with them…..might just stuff them and brase them.

          • March 28, 2016 at 11:58 pm
            Permalink

            Ken,

            Regarding canned squid, I notice there’s several varieties: those in ink and brine, and the asian brands of course in soy sauce. Someone on a message board said they’re “stringy”, while someone else said canned squid is “cooked to hell and back”, so there might be some textural “issues”. I’m curious what the “best when used by” shelf life date is on the can you bought.

            Here’s some canned squid recipe ideas.

            I say when in doubt, batter it and deep-fry it! lol

             

  • March 14, 2016 at 5:34 pm
    Permalink

    Japanese consider round musubis bad luck as they are ONLY served at funerals. Now these days anything goes but knowing that I never ever make round ones. Mom had major freak out when I made my first musubi round.

    Reply
    • March 14, 2016 at 5:54 pm
      Permalink

      In the old days we only had rice balls. They were all round, wrapped totally in nori, with a big ume in middle. Luck was just fine. Always had at the hukilaus. We had to catch the protien.

      Reply
    • March 14, 2016 at 9:28 pm
      Permalink

      N,

      I believe it’s a sphere shape like a ball that’s for funerals, not  flat round like a cylinder (click here for reference) the way this one is shaped. I used to have a wood omusubi maker from Japan that had three shapes in one: triangle, flat round and elongated round cylinder (Tawara).

      And I think Pat has a point about if the Musubi IS round like a ball (sphere), if it’s completely wrapped in Nori, then it changes the whole meaning (plain rice balls with no Nori are funerals).

      Actually when I make a few more with the remaining SITA from this can for friends to try, I’ll cut them in half so in a half-round shape, as the whole can size is too big and unwieldy.

      Reply
      • March 25, 2016 at 3:33 pm
        Permalink

        Pomai,

        I have a cookbook “Fun & Fancy Sushi” by Seiko Ogawa & Ine Mizuno which the first 29 pages are on how to make different kinds of Onigiri rice balls all in circular shapes, barrels, balls, flat circles, triangles, you name it. Even gives the history and types of Onigiri by Japanese Regional and no where is discussed used for funerals. They do however indicate there is Japanese, Chinese and Western Onigiri.

         

        Reply
        • March 28, 2016 at 11:43 pm
          Permalink

          Ken,

          Sounds like a good cook book. Interesting that there’s no mention of ball-shaped Onigiri only served at funerals. I’ll ask one of my Nihongin friends who’s still in her 20s (young generation) what her take is on that is. Whether she was taught that. Will get back on that.

          Reply
  • March 16, 2016 at 2:39 pm
    Permalink

    Pomai, picked up a can of Sita at Micronesian mart. The girl at the counter asked what the difference was with the red can. I explained it was the Australian popular Spam type food. She was totally intrigued and called  the other register girl over to have me explain. She looked Tongan so I asked if she was, no. Micronesian and never had anything but Spam and canned corned beefs before, although Ox and Palm was highly respected. So she sold this to Polynesians and never asked one what it was. It was only when someone who did not look like one came in that they asked. Long story short. They will be trying it, and will be making musubi for the family. We laughed it would be whole round for men, half for men and women.

    Reply
    • March 19, 2016 at 4:15 am
      Permalink

      Pat,

      Wow, you must fly back and forth between Kauai and Oahu often. Didn’t expect you to get to Micronesia Mart so soon. So funny that you thought the gal working there was Tongan. Nah. She was Micronesian? Working at Micronesia Mart? Who’d of thought? lol

      Actually, what’s interesting is, Tammy’s Polynesian Market is owned by a Korean lady, and usually operated by someone Korean (so I hear). I’m VERY curious how this Korean woman got into selling Polynesian (mostly Samoan) food. Did she marry a Samoan man? Or is she just so smart, that she knows a niche market when she sees one? If the latter, totally BRILLIANT!

      That said, now that borders have opened, I want to start a business venture in or with Cuba. I don’t know what yet, but something that ties Hawaii with Cuba, since we’re both tropical/subtropical.

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Advertisements
%d bloggers like this: