May 21, 2011

Let's Go Little Local to Kauai

When we have decided to go to Hawaii, we have picked the 'the Garden Isle' ( Kauai's nick name) for our heavenly stay. Though I wanted to witness the Volcano's that are on other island, my hubby thought it would be too much to do 'island hoping' as we are travelling with two young kids, and I agreed with him. So we have decided to stay on a Condo, after some research and talking to travel agents, we have decided to stay on the Poipu Beach, which is on the south shore of Kauai. Popiu Beach is very family friendly and well equipped with amenities like rest rooms, showers etc and it is one beach which is monitored by life guard.

Wild and Beautiful Flowers at Local Farm Market
So we have rented a nice luxury condo at Villas at Regency in Poipu Kai Resort area, though we did not get a ocean front or view, it is 5 min away from the beach and very convenient and we have enjoyed the walk to beach. When we check in, the minute i entered into condo, i quickly browsed the kitchen  (the usual me), and it was stunning, with all the stainless steel appliances and well organized cookery stuff.

As I am travelling with kids, I knew I had to cook some meals at the condo, for kids, and I have packed some rice box entries, oatmeal singles, mac and cheese microwavables, some breakfast bars, Nut thins, Cookies etc. I have looked on Google maps and realized they have Walmart near airport and Costco as well. ( Have no planning of Bulk Shopping at Costco, but the presence of Costco gave us some relief, don't know why we love Costco that much :-) )

After a 6 hour long flight, the tropical breezes, birds  and plants gave us a nice warm welcome. We got the car equipped with car seats and when everybody is set in the car, then we realized that we forgot to pack our GPS, ( after enough cursing ) we have relied on our mobile GPS and they did pretty good job too. We found the walmart and bought some frozen entries like chicken strips, mixed vegetables, Pizza and Noodles Packs, Milk, Bread, Eggs, Chips, Cereal. I am disappointed to see the lack of some fresh vegetables at the Walmart. We headed to condo enjoying the drive in those thick wooded tree roads. Not to mention, Kids are confused with the time difference ( 5 hour diff from Dallas), I have quickly figured the oven settings and baked the Tuscan Chicken Pizza for dinner. The family enjoyed the dinner together after 20 hours long daytime.

Tropical Bananas and Mountain Apples
Next day when I woke up and looking for my morning heaven ( yes, Coffee it is), and did not find any staples like Oil, Salt, Sugar etc. (Forgot to mention, we have packed our favorite instant coffee Taster's Choice and Kids Complan in the last minute, thanks to hubby's advice) We were told they will be available, so I haven't packed or planned for these. So we headed to the beach in search of some coffee shops, and after talking to locals, came to know the Big Save is the destiny for groceries and such kitchen staples which is located in the near by Historic Koala Town.

Big Save is similar to Kroger or Albertson's where you can find all the grocery needs and fresh vegetables and fruits. After picking all my kitchen staples, and entered into market section felt fresh by looking at all those fresh, tender and crisp vegetables and beautiful and unlimited Herbs (Mint, Basil, Thai Basil, cilantro) and the herb quantities are huge compared to here. (herbs must be abundant here for this tropical weather). And there are so many tropical fruits, local papayas  (are very small compared to Texas size), pineapples, kiwi, jack fruit etc. I have picked fresh spinach, onion, tomato, asparagus, EggPlant (they were just similar to the one in India, long and thin, how can i miss my favorite vegetable) and some tropical bananas and local papayas Seriously, The fresh produce reminded me so much of Indian vegetables and fruits.

After having a tummy full breakfast (Oh! those baby papayas are so sweet and yummy) we headed to North shore to check out the light house. On the way the nice variety of fruit stands attracted and made us stop by. There I found Big Hass Avocados, Egg Fruit, Tender Young Coconuts, Limes, Pumellos and Baby Tropical Bananas. The Young Coconut water was refreshing in the little sun on that day. Egg Fruit was interesting and new to me. So i  bought them to give it a try. They looked like ripe mangoes but inside they are so soft and tastes like Baked Pumpkin or Sweet Potato. That was a very filling fruit.
Egg Fruit on the Left and Baby Papaya on the Right

On our Boat Trip and Snorkeling day I found this fruit Seema Chintakayalu ( looks like twisted tamarind) which brought me so many childhood memories.

Baby Mango and Seema Chintakaya (twisted tamarind)
I think this fruit became rare in India these days and so hard to find it now (I am so happy to find this fruit here). When we were kids we used to go to farms with a long stick to reach these fruits on the top of the tree (cause, these trees are so delicate to climb ;-) ). Those were some fun days of childhood full of silly things. And on the way to Poipu Sands beach I found this Mango tree with full of baby mangoes.

Since I was there I have been longing to go to local farm market there which happens weekly in every town on the Island, as I have heard very good things about the nice display of local vegetables and fruits at these markets. We went to the one in Koala town near to Poipu Beach. It was a wonderful experience, (similar to 'Raitu Baazar' in India), I have witnesses so many local wild and beautiful flowers, the vegetables are fresh and tender, Hass Avocados, Baby Buck Choys, Chineese Egg Plants, Okra, Long Beans, Fresh Lettuce, Spinach and several herbs.
Okra, Green Long Beans, Chinese Egg Plant, Grape Tomatoes, Key Limes
On the fruits side, there are tropical bananas, Local Papayas, Baby Pineapples, Kiwi, Jackfruits, and Key Limes . There is another new fruit that I have never seen before, and that is Mountain Apple, It looks like elongated apple, and tastes like apple but it got some nice fragrance of some flowers. And not to mention their unlimited Young Tender Coconuts.
Baby Pineapples, Local Papayas, Tropical Bananas, Cucumbers

The people here are so innocent and very friendly,  I am glad I have picked Kauai, as I have had true Hawaiian Experience in every single moment of stay on this beautiful island.

Baby BuckCHoy, Hass Avocados and more... Wonderful Local Farm Market Experience at Koala Town
Besides all this local experience we have witnessed some nice food heavens also in Kauai.

Hope I have made you fly to Kauai with this reading experience.

Take Care until next time


  1. Wowww super fresh veggies and fruits...thanks for sharing those beautiful clicks..pleasant to eyes..

  2. Happy weekend! Don't forget to come over and share a recipe at Savory Sunday!!

  3. colourful tropical flowers
    mountain apples sound good
    delicious looking fruit
    long okras lovely produce you must have felt like cooking



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