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What I Ate Wednesday #5

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I haven’t done a WIAW in awhile; please comment or send me a message if you like these food posts so I can keep bringing them to you! This is all vegetarian:

WIAW Honolulu cereal

I LOVE this breakfast I came up with: Annie’s chocolate cereal, with almond milk, topped with cacao nibs and a sliced banana. It’s basically [healthy-ish] dessert for breakfast; you’re welcome.

WIAW Honolulu la tour cafe

In between work and errands, I picked up lunch from La Tour Cafe in Aina Haina: avocado toast! It came with a side salad and a very tasty, creamy dressing.

WIAW Honolulu

I stopped home in the afternoon before my evening job and had some coffee and half of a Bouchon Bakery cookie (made by me, from a box mix). It’s kind of like a homemade oreo. I have to say, I wasn’t really a fan (but I still ate the second half later, after dinner, because in any battle against sugar, I am the loser).

WIAW Honolulu healthy bowl dinner

My homemade dinner was healthy and delectable: quinoa mixed with red onion, kale, parmesan cheese and capers, topped with roasted acorn squash and a soft-boiled egg. So good!

What did you eat today?


Vegetarian Month at Hard Rock Cafe {Honolulu, HI}

vegetarian month at hard rock cafe

Today I had a lovely vegetarian lunch with my friend at Hard Rock Cafe in Waikiki. We started with some delicious carrot juice and a couple appetizers (not pictured here, but you can see them in the video below). One was a crispy flatbread topped with garlic oil, grilled ratatouille vegetables, shredded Romano and mozzarella cheeses and a drizzle of garlic aioli. YUMMM

vegetarian month at hard rock cafe

OMG this house-made patty of cauliflower, garlic, egg, goat cheese, oregano and breadcrumbs, topped with zucchini, squash, Monterey Jack cheese, arugula, tomato and garlic aioli, served on a toasted brioche bun was DELICIOUS. I made a mess eating it, but it was worth it.

vegetarian month at hard rock cafe

I so appreciate it when restaurants (and especially big companies), acknowledge and embrace their vegetarian customers! See the whole Waikiki location’s menu here and enjoy this quick video of our lunch:


Mahina & Suns {Honolulu}

mahina & sons waikiki restaurant review

Mahina & Suns is a trendy new restaurant in Waikiki, aptly located within the equally trendy and new boutique hotel Surfjack (“Hotel & Swimclub”). The restaurant is by local celebrity chef Ed Kenney, who is renowned for focusing on local, organic ingredients, and reinventing classic dishes of Hawaii (many of which tend to be cultural mashups).

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My boyfriend Kiyo and I took my mom to this restaurant per her request, for her birthday. She enjoyed a gin cocktail with her birthday card.

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I can’t remember what else was in my drink, besides cucumber, but it was light and refreshing, and I liked it a lot.

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Instead of bread (an uncommon free starter snack in Hawaii) we were served salted boiled peanuts. This is a classic Hawaii snack, and a very delicious and addictive rendition. We ate all of these, and I even ate the pickled jalapeño.

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We started by sharing “The Naked Cow,” thin crust pizza with Naked Cow Dairy fromage blanc, uncured bacon, and Maui onion (you can add more toppings; we chose green olives, parmesan and arugula. Take note because this is a stellar combination).

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We all really enjoyed the pizza. There aren’t many good pizza options in Hawaii, as I’ve mentioned on the blog before.

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Kiyo ordered chicken; an usual choice for him. He enjoyed the pan-roasted half-bird, served with hapa rice (white and brown mashup), pickled mushrooms and green coriander chutney.

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My mom ordered the avocado tacos, made with shishito, pickled red onion, and smoked yogurt. I felt that it should have said on the menu that the avocados come fried (I’m guessing my mom wouldn’t have ordered them if she’d known, but she didn’t complain).

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I ordered a starter for my main dish: the butter lettuce salad. It didn’t look like much, but it tasted more complete and interesting than it looked. radish, asparagus, sunflower seed, cured egg yolk, topped with avocado dressing.

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After dinner, we walked around the hotel. It’s very cute! I felt like I was in California, at a Hawaii-themed hotel, rather than actually in Hawaii. There aren’t many trendy places here that actually hit their mark.

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I went back recently for lunch, and very much enjoyed the Wild Salad (although it was just slightly overdressed) topped with garlicky tomato toast, and a fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice.

mahina & suns salad

Mahina & Suns

412 Lewers St, Honolulu, HI 96815

(808) 924-5810

Summer Orange Salad {Recipe}

summer orange salad recipe

This vegan, gluten-free recipe is so simple and easy, it can barely even be called one. My best friend Zan’s mom made this for Kiyo and me when we visited St. Thomas, and we were both blown away by how such a simple dish could be so lovely.

Summer Orange Salad

Serves 2-4

  • 3 oranges
  • .25 cup kalamata olives, pitted and halved
  • 1 tbsp. capers
  • fresh basil, sliced or chopped
  1. Cut the skin from the oranges, then slice each orange into desired thickness (about half an inch worked well for me)
  2. Top with olives, capers and basil
  3. Enjoy!


What I Ate Wednesday #4

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First WIAW in a long time!

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Breakfast: yummy Kashi cereal with extra cinnamon on top. I eat my cereal and drink my coffee with almond milk. To me, cereal is kind of a treat for breakfast.

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Snack: fresh passion fruit, yum! I love that this fruit is both tangy and sweet.

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Lunch: so, disclosure: this day was awhile ago. To be honest, I can’t remember what this was. It looks like a salad with cheese, peas, avocado… salami? I’m not sure, but it looks yummy!

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Snack: chocolate-covered macadamia nuts, since, as you know by now, I need chocolate almost every day.

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Dinner: For some reason, I ate a snack for dinner this night. Does anyone else enjoy apples with cheddar cheese?

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Dessert: white wine + dark chocolate M&Ms = instant dessert perfection.

I’ve definitely noticed a pattern in my diet: too much sugar (don’t forget, fruit is sugar too). Luckily, I’m currently reading a book called “The Juice Lady’s Sugar Knockout” (review to come) so hopefully I can kick the habit, or at least reduce it, soon.

What did you eat today?


Kan Zaman, Honolulu

Kan Zaman Honolulu

As you might expect, there aren’t myriad Moroccan restaurants in Honolulu. One of the few is Kan Zaman (which means “Once Upon a Time” in Arabic), located in the heart of downtown. My dad took Kiyo and I out there for dinner right after we moved back to Hawaii about a year ago, and I recently met Kiyo there for lunch. You can sit outside, in the back, and throughout the small restaurant the decor is simple yet perfect. It’s very simple and charming, and you can tell it’s Moroccan, but it isn’t excessive in any way.

The first meal we began with the mezza sampler, which was fabulous. It included (left to right): baba ganoush, warak inab (Lebanese stuffed grape leaves), hummus and taktouka (a Moroccan cooked tomato and green pepper salad). Served with pita bread, this was the perfect starter to share and whet the appetite.

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My second-favorite item was another that we all shared (we shared everything we ordered, which isn’t necessarily what’s intended at the restaurant, but it’s possible and quite easy). Not only does the house-pulled mozzarella with za’atar look beautiful, but it’s fun to eat! Also served with pita, as well as “vine-ripened” tomatoes, which were a little lackluster. I’ve never seen mozzarella like this, and I am a fan (but to be fair, I am a fan of pretty much any and all cheeses).

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We shared two entrees. The first was merguez sausage served over (not much) couscous and steamed carrots, cabbage, pumpkin, potato, chickpeas, onion, tomato and zucchini (I felt like they skimped a bit in serving our portion. Do you see all those vegetables there? I certainly don’t remember tasting pumpkin). The sausage was plentiful and was good, but not the best I’ve had.

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This looks like a plate of just french fries, but actually, it was our second entrée: chicken tajine. Braised with coriander, smoked paprika, cumin, lemon, saffron and olives, it was indeed topped with fries. These were extra tasty since they soaked up the juices from the chicken. It wasn’t the prettiest dish (I especially am wary of all-brownish plates) but it was good. The flavors didn’t pop as much as you might expect, but they were married nicely.

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What I Ate Wednesday: Honolulu

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Happy WIAW! Here’s what my Monday looked like this week.

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I had to take my breakfast to go – a homemade smoothie made with coconut water, POG (passion orange guava juice; just a splash, for sweetness), fresh mango, frozen chard, spirulina, baobab, half a lemon, chia seeds, and flax-seed oil. I’m working on a review of Kaibae Pure Organic Baobab Fruit Powder, and I like it a lot so far in my morning smoothies! I also took my coffee (with almond milk) with me to go in the car, since I was running late to work.

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About two hours later, I got peckish and had a Babybel Light cheese. This is when I noticed that the pictures were coming out blurry, so I turned my phone around to wipe off the camera, and noticed… it’s broken! 🙁 I dropped my phone this weekend and I guess the camera completely smashed. So sad! I will need to figure out what to do because I am leaving for a trip to the East Coast at the end of the month, and I will definitely need my phone camera working!

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Lunch was a big, satisfying salad: organic mixed greens, grape tomatoes, half an avocado, salami slices, Parmesan cheese, and Love [pickled] Beets. I made an easy dressing out of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, Himalayan sea salt, black pepper and Penzey’s Fox Point seasoning. So simple, but so good.

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Snapdragon Bakery & Cafe, Vashon

Vashon healthy restaurant

Just about a year ago now, a few friends and I accompanied Kiyo back to his hometown of Vashon, a small island in Puget Sound, right next to Seattle. We ate lunch one day at Snapdragon, a vegetarian eatery. The “about” page on their website says only, “Snapdragon opened its doors in February of 2012. Adam Cone and Megan Hastings are the creative minds behind this endeavor.”

I ordered the Lentil Fritters. Favored with mild chilis and East Indian flavors (?), it comes with a yogurt garlic sauce; a slaw of red cabbage, carrots, ginger and parsley; apple chutney; and house-made bread. For $12.50, it can also be made gluten-free or vegan (this goes for many, if not most, items on the menu). I was very happy with my meal and ate almost all of it, even though it was a lot!

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Someone ordered the soup but I can’t remember what it was (offerings change daily).

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Someone else ordered the salad special, and again, I can’t exactly remember what it was. But it looks delicious! I also like how almost everything comes with their hearty, house-made bread.

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Brunch at Tilia Exquisite Aloha, Honolulu

Tilia Exquisite Aloha is a cafe located directly beneath the yoga studio I teach at in Waikiki (Yogaloha). If you haven’t already surmised by the name, it is a very Japanese-targeted (and possibly/probably owned) place. When I saw it pop up on Groupon, I figured it was a good time to check it out. One weekend after my class, Kiyo and I went for brunch. It definitely felt like a tourist destination and I don’t enjoy the decor, which combines retail along the walls of the restaurant.

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We split two items: a waffle sandwich (I don’t know… but their menu seemed to feature this oddity, so we went for it) and a pitaya bowl. The sandwich sounds like it would be good (turkey, lettuce, tomato, cheese, green apple) but it just wasn’t. So far, all waffle-sandwiches I’ve tried have been terrible (remember this one?) and this was no exception. It sounds like possibly a good idea to make a sandwich on a waffle, because you’d get salty and sweet, but it just doesn’t work. The salad and small side of fruit I liked a lot, except the dressing was way too sweet and ruined it for me.

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Pitaya, also known as dragon fruit, has gained a lot of popularity lately in Hawaii. It can be used to make pitaya bowls, similar to the beloved acai bowl. Our bowl was awesome; it came with yogurt, granola, honey and lots of fresh fruit. I really enjoyed it, but it would have been pricey without our Groupon.

Tilia Exquisite Aloha

Location: 403 Kaiolu St., Honolulu, Hawaii 96815 Phone : 808-888-2011

Lunch at Terrace Pointe Cafe, Wynn Las Vegas


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I’ve stayed at Wynn Las Vegas twice; once for my 21st birthday celebration vacation (yeah… it seemed really important at the time!) and once for a work trip when I was working in Public Relations.

Terrace Pointe Cafe The Wynn Las Vegas

I think I had the same room both times. But the first time, there were three of us, and the second, I had it all to myself. It was a wonderful way to work, I must say.

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One day I had lunch with my boss in between events in one of the hotel’s restaurants: Terrace Pointe Cafe. It is one of their more casual spaces and serves breakfast, lunch and brunch. It features bright, cheery decor and views of the pool (but it’s inside).

I ordered the Asian Chicken Salad: Napa cabbage, carrots, daikon, bean sprouts, mandarin oranges, watercress, snap peas, toasted almonds, crispy wontons, sesame dressing. It was a stereotypical “Asian salad” in that the chef unabashedly threw ingredients that sound Asian but are familiar to Americans into one pile (do you think anyone in Asia has ever eaten this? I don’t). However, it was perfectly balanced and honestly quite delicious. I liked how it was almost like a crunchy, salty-sweet coleslaw. At $17 it was a bit pricey, but everything is in hotels and in Las Vegas when you’re on the strip. And, I didn’t mind since work was paying!

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