Archive for October, 2008

Waiola Shave Ice: Tropical Paradise Treat!

October 26, 2008
Waiola Shave Ice

Waiola Shave Ice

This past week i ended up on the lovely island of oahu in hawai’i. My cousin invited me to try this awesome shaved ice place that apparently has been around for a while. Wonder how i never discovered this place before?!? The place is called Waiola Shave Ice and in my opinion has the best shaved ice i have ever had in my life. Wow you might think to yourself, it must be really good shaved ice. well you know what? it damn is. it damn well is.
Click for a better view of the menu!

Click for a better view of the menu!

This original location (there is two in all) is found on a small side street on whats pretty much one of the local corner shops. there you can buy all your small little snacks and drinks. the side window however is where the action really is. on a sunny and warm day in hawai’i (which is plenty and often!) you’ll find lines and lines of people outside waiting to devour this nice cold chilly treat.

One of the locals biking to get some shave ice

One of the locals biking to get some shave ice

My cousin, as the local that has been here before, already knew what i wanted. it was to be the small cup with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on the bottom, followed by mochi balls, shaved ice topped with pineapple and strawberry syrup and a nice thick dash of Li Hing Mui powder to top it all off.

Conclusion. absolutely delicious and refreshing. As you can see, the shaved ice is so finely carved, that it resembles not so much shavings as more like a snowy powder. the result of which, applied with a generous amount of fruit syrup ( in this case pineapple and strawberry), you’ll realize that every single part of the shaved ice is drenched with flavor, tasting more like ice cream/popsicle then anything else. The syrup is itself was strong and well balanced, covering up any possible ice taste.  Topped on the shave ice, is Li Hing Mui. its a traditional chinese food, made from salty dried plum. In the bottom picture, you can see it as a red powder on top of the shave ice. From wiki, “The li hing mui is said to be an acquired taste because it has the combination of sweet, sour, and salty taste. Some people also say that it tastes tart, and some even tangy.” Well that quote is pretty much spot on. I’ve had the actually li hing mui seed plenty of times before, but shamefully i have to say this is the first time i’ve had the powder with ice cream, and i’m so upset with myself that it took me so long to find out!

The syrup penetrates every single part of the shave ice

The syrup penetrates every single part of the shave ice

As i dug deeper down, i finally hit the mochi and the vanilla ice cream. the mochi for those of  you that are not in the “in”, is a glutinous rice which is pounded into a paste and then molded into shape. In this case, the mochi were rectangular shaped. The mochi came out nice soft and slighty chewy, exactly how mochi should be. Along with a nice helping of vanillia ice cream (probably generic store brand), the mochi came out tasting delicious.

You can see the mochi in this pic, probably pinkish from the red syrup

You can see the mochi in this pic, probably pinkish from the red syrup

Scoop of vanilla ice cream at the bottom. still want more!

Scoop of vanilla ice cream at the bottom. still want more!

Now combine the vanilly creamy ice cream, soft chew mochi, flavorful shave ice, and the tangy li hing mui powder into one scoop and wow, AWESOME!

Parking lot of waiola

Parking lot of waiola

They actually have a parking lot for this place that can handle about 10 cars. must be useful over the weekends. But, now that i think about it, it is a pretty big parking lot for such a small mum and pop joint. Maybe it belongs to someone else?

Oh wells. This place as you probably can already of tell, is great treat. the whole cone cost about 3.50, which is about the cost of a starbucks drink and definitely a good change up from all that caffiene.

I’ll definitely be back here again and i hope i’ve managed to convince some of you that will be heading to oahu hawai’i to hunt this little gem out for yourselfs.

Aloha!!

2135 Waiola Ave corner of Paani Street
Honolulu, HI 96805

(808) 949-2269

Yelp site

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Pick your own seafood: A Taste of Hong Kong

October 5, 2008
Shrimp

Shrimp

Hi All. sorry for the recent absence. Work has kept me super busy. I’m sure all of you have been there and understand. =).

As recently as a month or two ago, i headed over to Hong Kong for a friends wedding. While there, i got to experience all the magnificient sites and food that this compact city has to offer.

I'm not sure what this is, but i'm pretty sure we ate it!

I have no clue what these could be

One of the many seafood vendors

One of the many seafood vendors

 

One of the highlights of the trip was the seafood market. my memory is a little hazy, but i believe this market is called Lei Yue Mun, and can be found along the seafront. This place is amazing. Basically you have a long street with seafood restaurants, along with fresh seafood sellers selling their wares. You go to any of the many seafood restuarants first, and get a table. Then you leave the restaurant (remembering their name) and walk and check out all the seafood stores around it. See some kinda seafood you like from any of the dozen of vendors? ask for it, they’ll tell you what kinda good yummy’s you can cook it into. then tell them the name of the restaurant your at and they’ll pack it and walk it right away to the restaurant where they cook it for you. Talk about FRESH and YUMMY! i can just recall one of my friends (or me) looking into the eye of a wierd looking crustacean and saying to it “hi there, your gonna taste yummy in ma belly” . lol. True story with some ab-libs. hahah.

Here are some of the plethora of seafood we ordered. Stuff i’ve eaten many of times before, plus others that looked wierd cook, and even scary when alive!

Steamed Shrimp

Steamed Shrimp

I have no clue what this isWe let our hosts pick our food, them being the more knowledgable about chinese seafood. So we got to try alot of unique ones i've never had before. All i can say is that it was a treat and unique experience eating them all. Of course, the sight of these odd creatures did make me pause a second before eating them, wondering how to bypass all the claws and chitin covered appendages.


I have no clue what this is

Close up of unknown thingie

We got a whole bunch of clams for free cuz we ordered so much!We ordered so much from one particular vendor, they gave us a whole bowl of clams. this picture doesn't do it any justice, but we had dozens upon dozens of clams. All for FREE. FREE i say, FREE!!

We got a whole bunch of clams for free cuz we ordered so much![/caption]

These cost over 10 bucks a piece!

These cost over 10 bucks a piece!

 A special treat were these huge oysters. the shell was the size of my entire hand, while the muscle inside itself was about the size of a silver dollar.  They were steamed with some rice noodles and green onion chives spread over the top with a teaspoon of fried garlic on top. the muscles inside where tender with a strong hint of garlic. delicious. It was quite a sticker shock to realize upon paying that each of these oysters cost over $10 US dollars a peice. ouch!

close up. absolutely delicious and huge!

close up. absolutely delicious and huge!

Cheesey is all i can say about this dish. steamed lobster then put into a mac and spaghettie type italian dish where it was broiled for a bit. this was probably the least favorite of my dish as it was greasy and heavy on the fat.
 
Free Desert! THis was really good!
Free Desert! THis was really good!

To finish off our meal, we got a bonus of ripe fruits. Really made the night of our fantastic dishes. Overall, 6 of us ate this and the meal it self came out to be quite a hefty $240 US dollars or so. I kinda thought being in HK, it would of been cheaper but i guess not. oh wells, it was a unique experience and i definitely enjoyed the whole experience.

 
Sorry for not putting up more descriptions and stuff. just been really busy of late. I’ll try and do a better job soon when things lighten up. until then. thanks for coming to Yummy Monterey Park! See ya next week!