Aloha Kitchen: Recipes from Hawai’i

Ten Speed. Mar. 2019. 240p. photos. index. ISBN 9780399581366. $30. COOKING
This inspirational and informative cookbook from Maui native Kysar (Fix Feast Flair blog) covers the many flavors and iconic dishes of the island state, including poke, saimin, and poi, as well as lesser-known treats such as butter mochi and hurricane popcorn. There is an impressively digestible history of the influences on Hawaiian cuisine, including Native Hawaiian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Filipino, and Portuguese. Sections on the Hawaiian pantry and a produce guide are also useful; while some special ingredients are utilized, Kysar has tried to minimize recipes that would be impossible for mainlanders to reproduce. The design and photography are lush and beautiful without straying into the territory of unattainable, with Kysar’s engaging love for her native state clearly informed by her family’s open approach to everything that might be delicious.
VERDICT There aren’t many recent titles that cover Hawaiian cooking so thoroughly or beautifully. If you can’t get to Hawaii for a plate lunch soon, this book will set you up.

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