Tag Archives: scallop

Maui, Hawaii Part 2

15 Mar

During the difficult times at work, I like to fondly think of my time in Maui. At one point during our trip, Bubby and I had a serious conversation about moving to Hawaii and opening a shrimp truck called Miso’s.  But of course Bubby the buzz kill killed my shrimp truck dreams. At least we should try to visit every year. And every year I’m going to eat this French toast at Kihei Caffe (yes, two “f”s).

Banana macadamia nut French toast

This is the best French toast I have ever had.  Thick slices of crispy sweet bread, thick banana slices, crunchy macadamia nuts, drizzled with maple syrup and the house coconut syrup.

All of the components in one bite made me preach.  “I feel good! I feel good, because I know there’s a God somewhere! There’s a God somewhere! You know there’s a God who sits on high and looks down low! Man cannot make it like this!” Name that movie.

Bubby ordered the pork fried rice loco moco.

The pork fried rice inspired me to make a kimchi pork fried rice loco moco, and everything is better with kimchi. But even without the kimchi, this dish was savory and the perfect salty pairing to my French toast.  Kihei Caffe is a caloric dream come true.  While reveling in our food fantasy, we were suddenly disturbed by a gang of birds.

And the king of the bird gang, Rufio! Ruf-i-oooooooooooooo!

We got the hell out of the crossfire of Rufio’s gang, and went to Charley Young Beach so I could rub my belly in peace.

And at this beach, Poseidon summoned me once again. And in true Hawaiian tradition, I donated my favorite Rayban sunglasses to Poseidon.  Every time I go to Hawaii, Poseidon takes what it wants.  Seven years ago, it was my Juicy Couture red jumper and Ipod.  What was my jumper and Ipod doing in the ocean? Or better yet, why the hell was I wearing Juicy Couture?!  It was seven years ago, and it was a cute ass beach jumper.  Seven years ago, Bubby and I placed our belongings in a locker.  Bubby pinned the locker key to his board shorts while we took surfing lessons.  While Poseidon tossed us around wildly, the locker key unfastened from Bubby’s shorts.  Assuming we lost the key and needed the office to open our locker, we noticed our locker was wide open and empty.  Someone had found our key and stole our possessions, including Bubby’s wallet, our towels, and book.  We walked back to our hotel soaking wet with shame, almost nude, pissed as fuck at Poseidon.  Damn you, Poseidon.  I hope you are rocking the shit outta my shades.

Because there was so much to eat and so little time, we went to Foodland –the best grocery store in the land.  While Kroger (I call every grocery store Kroger) sells rotisserie chickens, Foodland sells spam musubi, ahi poke, and my favorite, spicy raw crab!.

Look at this big ass avocado!

You can also see how the humidity in Hawaii is helping my winter’s eczema, too.

For dinner, Bubby and I went to Mama’s Fish House, a very popular restaurant in Maui.  The restaurant faces the beautiful ocean view and provided a very romantic atmosphere.

Macadamia nut crab cakes

I love crab cakes and cannot wait to go to Baltimore to eat some authentic cakes and to take The Wire tour.  These crab cakes definitely had nice chunks of crab, more crab than breading which is essential for a good CRAB cake.  The tomato relish provided a nice spicy and cool hint of flavor to the meaty cakes.

Opakapaka in lime and coconut milk served in a fresh coconut (Tahitian ceviche)

I asked for extra limes and drowned the shit out of the Hawaiian pink snapper.  I scraped the coconut flesh off the shell and mixed the gelatinous shavings with the ceviche.  This ceviche is making my mouth water as I type these damn words.

Bouillabaisse Mahimahi, lobster, shrimp, scallop and shellfish simmered in a saffron broth, with garlic rouille

Isn’t this picture the most beautiful bowl of underwater treasures?  As you can imagine, the seafood in Hawaii is fresh fo’ sho’.  The scallops were the size of silver dollars and as thick as marshmallows.  There was so much seafood in this dish that every spoonful contained several different types of seafood. My only issue with this dish was that I don’t think the pasta is made from scratch.  If Mama made fresh pasta, this dish would be the best dish of the trip especially since I rationed the garlic bread to last throughout the entire meal.

And to remind myself that I’m on vacation, I make sure the following happen.  I don’t wear makeup.  I must consume a fruity beverage with an umbrella  in it.  And I eat dessert after every meal.  Yes, every meal.  Ergo, ladies and gentlemen I introduce you to Ono Gelato.  The best fuckin’ gelato I have ever had.  Yes, I’ve never had gelato from Italy, but I don’t think I’ll have to.

Coconut is the shit.  But add some strawberry into the swirl, and I was immediately doing my happy dance while wiggling my toes.  Bubby even asked, “Are your toes dancing for gelato?”  Yes, Goddamit. Don’t judge me.  Best. gelato. ever.

Okay, I just gained five pounds writing this shit.

Kihei Caffe
1945 South Kihei Road
Kihei, HI

Mama’s Fish House
799 Poho Place
Paia, HI

Ono Gelato
1280 South Kihei Road
Kihei, HI

Ono Gelato
115 Hana Hwy # D
Paia, HI

Ono Gelato
815 Front Street
Lahaina, HI

We went to two out of the three Ono Gelato locations, and I give 5 slow mothafuckin claps.


Sushi Murasaki

28 Feb

This is my first post about sushi which is really odd because I love sushi.  While other children ate cheerios and watched cartoons on Saturday morning, we ate fresh sushi and tied raw chicken legs on string to catch blue crabs.  My parents would wake us up at 3 am on Saturday morning so we could make our morning drive to Galveston for a full day of fishing and crabbing.  Half asleep, my brother, sister, and I would crawl into the back seat of our Cutlass Sierra Oldmobile and wake up to the smell of the ocean.  My dad and brother would fish all day while my mom, sister, and I would catch crabs with raw chicken and a net.  When we got tired, we would jump in the ocean like children do and play.   When I was 4 or 5, my sister and I jumped into the ocean and my right foot landed on a hard shell with jagged edges.  I’m not sure if it was an oyster shell or a conch shell but it cut deeply into my foot.  I lifted my foot out of the water, and streaks of blood ran down my leg.   I remember it clearly.  My mom yelled for my dad, and my dad ripped open a Marlboro, unpacked the tobacco, spit in it, and created a homemade Neosporin like a Korean shaman.  He packed the tobacco into the cut and it actualy healed nicely.  My Marlboro scar isn’t that bad.  I probably have nicotine permanently running through my veins but whatever.

Anyway, after our long Saturdays at Galveston, my dad would prepare fresh slices of sashimi from his catch of the day.  So at a very young age, we were spoiled with really great sashimi.  I crave and eat a lot of it, often.

We went to Sushi Murasaki in Orange County.

Bubby and I always order the agedashi tofu for our appetizer.  It’s a must.

Fried soft tofu in a tentsuyu broth made of dashi, mirin, and Japanese soy sauce.  The broth was warm and light.  I spooned it into my mouth until it was all gone.  Perfectly flavored.  The tofu was a good soft and silky texture.  Bubby thought there was too much broth to really enjoy the fried texture of the tofu.  I didn’t mind the broth at all.

Our nigiri arrived. Isn’t this beautiful?

Top row (L to R): fatty toro (x2), yellowtail belly (x2), salmon belly
Middle row (L to R):  mackerel, another mackerel, kohada, tuna, sweet shrimp, salmon roe with quail egg
Bottom row (L to R):  salmon, albacore, kumamoto oyster

Fatty toro is the best.  So fatty.  The best fatty toro I ever had was at Urasawa where you seared the outside of the toro on a hot stone rock and it sizzled in its own fat.  Amazing.

The yellowtail belly was also really tasty and fresh.  Bubby insisted I take note of the salmon, “It was most delicious.”  All of the fish was fresh, including the sweet shrimp.  It had a very clean taste to it.  The only piece I disliked was the kumamoto oyster.  I felt sick after eating it.  It did not sit well.

Our spicy scallop hand roll:

The scallops were fresh but instead of adding the spicy sauce into the Japanese mayonaisse and scallop  mix, they just added it on top.  It was okay, but the nori was crispy and good.  I probably would not order this again.

The next dish was the chawanmushi, Japanese egg custard.  The weird thing about this restaurant was the order the food arrived.  I’m used to the chawanmushi and miso served before the sushi.  Here, they arrived last.

The egg custard was soft and silky and super hot.  Mmmm.  I could do without the shiitake mushrooms, I’m not a fan of mushrooms.  But after spoonfuls of treasure, there were nuggets of shrimp and fish at the bottom of the rainbow.  Very good.

We ordered salmon cheeks but they were out.  Instead, they brought yellowtail cheek.  The consistency is similar to hamachi kama, yellowtail collar.  It was really delicate and flaked off in soft pieces.

The sauce was a ponzu sauce.  I could just drink it by the glass.  Try these cheeks, you won’t regret it.

Finally, for dessert, my miso soup arrived.

I would not order it again, it had a strange fish smell and taste to it that I did not appreciate.

When the bill arrived, Bubby noticed that they did not fry my sweet shrimp head.  I love my sweet shrimp head!  But by the time we realized this, I was too full to remind them to bring my head.

Damn it.  I shall not forget next time.  I shall not.

Sushi Murasaki had its ups (fatty toro, yellowtail belly, yellowtail cheeks, chawanmushi, agedashi tofu broth) and downs (kumamoto oyster, miso soup, spicy scallop handroll, no fried shrimp head).  The ups outweighed the downs, and for that, I’ll give 4 claps.

Coming soon: I’m giving 2 restaurants a perfect 5 slow clap rating.  Stay tuned.

Sushi Murasaki
2901 W MacArthur Blvd, Suite 108
Santa Ana, CA