By Braddah Lance
Da season for onolicous grindz has begun.
With Thanksgiving just a couple days away, holiday office pah-tay's and family gatherings, you just can't help yourself to over indulge in foods - most times homemade - that you normally don't eat often.
Go on and admit it. It's da foods you don't cook often if even at all.
I for one enjoy seeing all the different dishes as well as those I want to see at these gatherings cause while there's a chance I may be able to make it myself, it always tastes bettah wen someone else makes it..... at da very least someone else is doing da dishes.
In Hawai'i, we live in a chop suey culture wea our side dishes could be - and often times has been - a main meal itself. At da pot luck table, there's always da varying degrees of chicken or beef but da sides are wea people get creative and elaborate.
We must be da only state wea at potlucks we have an "option" to make like a gazillion different kine salads and no one bats an eye. Of course, there are about a dozen ways to make da island staple of mac salad. But then we get things like somen salad, pasta salad, tossed salad, potato salad and we've all eaten just a salad as a meal before.
Then naturally of course gotta have rice. Musubi's (with or without a surprise center), nori wrapped, furikake, sushi and fried rice just to name a few.
Can't forget about da oodles of noodles from chow mein to fried udon to chop chae.
And you most definitely can't call an island style pot luck complete without poke. Das po-kay. Not po-key. Anoddah local word not being pronounced correctly.....
Wassup Wit Dat!
We've all been to da local fish department in grocery stores, or fish markets in general, and get about two dozen or so poke dishes to choose from. Get shoyu, shoyu onion, masago, limu and of course, spicy kine naming just a few ways it's prepared. Poke is made with any kine - most times - raw fish so da combinations of "sauces" are endless.
Those are just da tip of da iceberg wen we think about side dishes. We all look forward to these fantabulous "meals" especially wen we not making 'em and I dunno about you but wen I know "somebody" going be at a pah-tay, I look forward to "their" dish. And we ALL have a few people we "want" at da pah-tay.
I look forward to Da Wife's broiled sushi (although I gotta do da dishes - WWD!), da relatives soba/spinach salad, someone always brings tako poke and my absolute absolute favorite (rogah, das absolute TWICE!), spicy ahi.
If I nevah have to share, I'd pound every single bit of dat spicy ahi and still look for more.
So for those who "always make da same thing", please no feel like it gets boring or tiring cause wen you no bring 'em, those "expecting" 'em are disappointed. It's just one of those things you're "expected" to bring no mattah wat so just suck it up and take one for da team.
Wat's your favorite pupu or side dish at pot lucks? Do you look forward to a friend or relative's dish? Are you an "expected" cook?