Let’s Talk Food: Sous vide cooking

More and more restaurants are using sous vide to cook. There are still many of you out there who, when you hear sous vide, have no idea what it is, including my husband, Jim.

Tropical Gardening: Check out the 40th annual Horticultural Show and Plant Sale Feb. 28-29

We have been having very strange weather this year, at least in Kaloko Mauka. This is generally our dry winter season, but we have had rains almost every day. Kona is usually a bit dry looking, but this year it is lush and green. From what we hear, windward side is sunnier than usual. The old adage that March roars in like a lion and leaves like a lamb may no longer be the norm.

Let’s Talk Food: Fat Tuesday is next week

Next week Tuesday is Fat Tuesday, which is a day before Ash Wednesday. It is a celebration of food, lots of it, before the Lenten season. Mardi Gras is French for “Fat Tuesday” and po boy sandwiches, crawfish, shrimp and grits, Creole crab cakes, shrimp and chicken etouffee, dirty rice, and red beans and rice are some of the items on the menu for that day.

Tropical Gardening: Australia’s forest fires threaten unique flora and fauna

When it comes to strange animals and plants, Australia is in the lead for its share of the unusual to unique. This ancient mini continent has mammals that lay eggs to the marsupials that carry their premature babies in pouches. Recent fires put many in the animal kingdom at risk and the plant kingdom as well. Some Australian ecosystems will be altered for centuries and some may never recover.

Let’s Talk Food: A foodie in Tokyo

I can go to Japan at least twice a year and always find something interesting and new each time. So when my son Reid asked my sister, Myra, her husband James and I to go with him to Tokyo, we all said, ‘Yes, of course!’ There are the wonderful breakfasts at the hotel that we always look forward to. The ceramic trays with nine compartments can be easily filled with the many different dishes. There are a lot of pickled vegetables, tofu in broth, and of course, natto, fermented soy beans, a great probiotic. Once the compartments are filled, there was also white or brown rice, and miso soup to fill up your tray.

Tropical Gardening: Old Kona Airport plant sale features airplants to xerophytes

Mark your calendar for next Saturday (Feb. 8) from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. to check out the People Plant Road Show at the Old Kona Airport. Twelve local nurseries are cooperating to share their plants and expertise. Peter and Kay Demello specialize in airplants and succulents. Chitose and Tsuyoshi Tsumura will have a unique collection of rare anthurium available, Phoenicia and Bob Zeller along with Sean Spellicy and Iris Viacrusis will be there to answer all your plant questions as well. Quindembo nursery will bring their best bamboos, so don’t miss this fun event. Speaking of bamboos they can be especially good for the wet and windy areas of North Kohala and Waimea. They add a tropical Asia look and do well in Kona where rainfall and irrigation are adequate. Susan Ruskin and Peter Berg are responsible for introducing more than 100 species of elite bamboos from all over the world. They specialize in the clumping types that tend not to spread like some of the running types. Some species are small and fit well into mini gardens. Others may reach 80 feet in height and can make quite a statement in larger gardens. Many bamboos have edible shoots and are valuable for construction or crafts. Many species are also ideal as windbreaks.