Friday, November 27, 2015

Sunny's Lomi Sardines

My sister Sunny is allergic to salmon and shrimp so my mom would always have to make one bowl of lomi sardines for Sunny. Lomi in Hawaiian just means to rub, mash, massage, mash fine, crush. It basically means to put everything in a bowl and massage it together . Sunny likes it spicy and I don't but I was going to eat her lomi sardines anyway so my mom would make two bowls. One spicy, and one not.


  • 2 cans sardines (either the one in olive oil or if you want it spicy, the one with jalapeno pepper)
  • 2 or more tomatoes, diced
  • 1 round onion, diced
  • green onion to taste
  • inamona to taste
  • Hawaiian salt to taste
  • some kind of vinaigrette (whatever is on sale: Italian, zesty Italian, balsamic. . .)
  • Optional - squeeze of lemon or lime

  1. Drain the oil from the sardines, take out the bone and break it apart a little
  2. Add the rest of the ingredients and enough dressing to taste
  3. Cover and put it in the refrigerator for at least half an hour before eating.
Note: my Grandma Sodetani used to peel the skin off the tomatoes. She also used to pick off all the little ends of the bean sprouts too. If she wasn't in her yard or in the hot house with her anthuriums, Grandma was in the kitchen. I was too young to learn how to cook with her and once the Alzheimer started taking over her mind and she got worried about leaving the stove on and forgetting it, she stopped cooking. But I remember her in the kitchen and having spent my fair amount of time in kitchens I realize that she cooked with love and that included doing unnecessary prep like putting the tomato in hot water to take the skin off.

So if you want to take the skin off the tomato first, by all means, #cookwithlove

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Smoked Bourbon and Orange Brined Turkey

Every year Big Spazz makes two turkeys in his electric smoker and one turkey in his oil free fryer. So far, this is his favorite brine for the smoked turkeys. Take out the innards, put the defrosted turkey in the brine and leave it in the refrigerator overnight. 

Ingredients for brine:
  • 2 gallons cold water
  • 1-1/2 c bourbon
  • 1 c Hawaiian salt
  • 1 c brown sugar
  • 1 lg naval orange, sliced into 6 wedges
  • 1 bay leaf, crumbled
  • 1 Tbsp. white pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
Ingredients for turkey:
  • 1 (12-14 lb) turkey, defrosted, giblets removed
  • 1 large naval orange, sliced into 6 wedges
  • several sprigs fresh herbs: sage, thyme, rosemary
  • 1 Tbsp. butter
  1. For the brine, in a large stockpot or other container large enough to hold the turkey and brine, combine the water, bourbon, salt, brown sugar, orange wedges (squeeze each wedge to release the juice), bay leaf, pepper, and cinnamon. Stir to dissolve the salt and sugar. 
  2. Add the turkey to the brine, breast-side down, weighting it with resealable plastic bags filled with ice or cold water. Refrigerate the turkey and brine for 24 hours. 
  3. Recommended hardwood for smoking: apple
  4. Cook time - 3 hours