Buy Local, It Matters with Chef Alan Wong

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The "Buy Local, It Matters" campaign aims to encourage residents to support Hawaii farmers by making conscious decisions to purchase locally grown produce.

The effort supports buying locally as there are so many reasons including the enjoyment of fresher, more nutritious food, preserving green open space, reducing the use of fossil fuels for shipping and, of course, supporting our local farmers.

This campaign began as a joint project involving the University of Hawaii College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources (CTAHR), the Hawaii Farm Bureau Federation and the Hawaii Department of Agriculture in 2005. The program continues today through the participation of the Department of Agriculture in various events and activities.

The following recipe is courtesy of "The Hawaii Farmers Market Cookbook Volume II – The Chefs' Guide to Fresh Island Foods," published by Watermark Publishing.

Kabocha Pumpkin with Cranberries and Nuts

Kabocha is a delicious winter squash with a streaky green rind and tender and smooth orange flesh. Steam, bake or saute kabocha; Japanese home cooks have been preparing it with soy sauce and sugar for a long time.

  • 1 small kabocha (about 3 pounds)
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup chopped macadamia nuts or other nuts
  • Canola oil for cooking
  • Lehua honey
  • Kosher salt

Wash kabocha and slice lengthwise into 6 pieces. Remove seeds and fiber. Cut each slice crosswise into 1/4-inch thick slices, leaving the skin on.

In a large saute pan, heat several tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat. Add kabocha and cook, turning the slices in the pan. When kabocha is 2/3 of the way cooked, drizzle with honey to taste. Turn off heat; add cranberries and nuts. Add salt to taste and mix thoroughly. When cranberries and nuts are heated through, transfer mixture to a serving dish and serve.

Serves 6.

Local ingredients and sources:

  • Kabocha (Khampout Farms)
  • Macadamia nuts (Hawaiian Host)
  • Panaewa Honey (harvested from hives at UH Hilo through Adopt a Beehive with Alan Wong)
  • Sauteed red and dino kale with house-cured pancetta (Red Kale from Otsuji Farms, Dino Kale from MA'O Farms)
  • Chilled tomato soup (Hamakua Springs Country Farms and Ho Farms)
  • Taro mash
  • Sauteed eryngi and shimeiji mushrooms (Hamakua Heritage Mushrooms)
  • Grilled Kahuku Corn with Yuzu Miso Dressing (Nozawa Farms)
  • Herbed goat cheese log with crostini (Hawaii Island Goat Dairy)
  • Kauai Shrimp Salad with avocado (Kauai shrimp, avocado from Poamoho Organic)
  • Stuffed eggs with crispy pipikaula (Peterson Upland Farms)
  • Malasadas with coconut ginger sauce

Copyright 2011 by Hawaii News Now. All Rights Reserved.