Saturday, November 24, 2012

Local Kine Grindz

When I lived in Hawaii, there was a popular TV show called “Local Kine Grindz.” Da Kine is hard to translate.
It is a substitute for saying a word, like using "whatchamacallit". Grindz means food. So you could say, “I go da kine fo da grindz.”(I go to the store to get food.) Anyway, Braddah Sam and Lina Girl go around rating local restaurants. This brings me to Plate Lunch. Plate Lunch is two scoops of white rice, a scoop of macaroni salad and a serving of something like teriyaki beef or Kalua pork. It is everywhere and I was not a big fan.
SPAM is also everywhere, including in a popular sushi kind of thing with rice and slices of SPAM rolled up in seaweed. This was hardy enough that it could sit out in a display case. It was sort of like the anti-sushi where only fresh stuff is used. SPAM is so popular, there is a rumor that a hidden SMAP bunker is somewhere on the islands. For all I know it could be true.
My coworkers introduced me to bubble drinks. These are like smoothies with small, black tapioca balls floating in it. You suck it through a straw, occasionally getting a little chewy pearl of tapioca. They taste a little bit licorice. It is odd to drink something and end up with something to chew.
A word on poi. Poi is a purple, paste-like food made from smashed taro root. When it is fresh is supposedly tastes sweet but, because of natural fermentation, it turns sour. You eat it by dipping two fingers into a pot and licking it off. My kids’ school had a little taro garden and they got to make their own poi. I tried it once and it must have been really old because it was pucker-up sour! Plus I am generally opposed to any food that is purple, paste-like or eaten with fingers used as a spoon.
Then there is the famous Geovanni’s shrimp truck. It roams the North Shore and sells shrimp scampi. It has some of the best shrimp I’ve ever had, lemony and garlicy. They also have spicy shrimp with a disclaimer – No Refunds. I’ve never tried it but I hear it is burn your mouth down hot.
Lumpia is a Philippian egg roll dipped in a sauce. The wrapper is a little thinner than a traditional egg roll and the flavors are stronger. There is also a sweet banana lumpia which is dusted with powdered sugar and dipped in chocolate. For my work, I went to several Philippian houses in a day. Most of them have a tradition of hospitality so I had many, many lumpia. (If you haven’t already guessed, I rapidly became a very big girl.)

No comments :