The 2nd Annual Breadfruit Fest held on Saturday, September 29th at the Amy B. H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Gardens in Captain Cook on the Big Island of Hawai'i showed that breadfruit can be a versatile source of food.
Breadfruit has been feeding Pacific Islanders for milennia and although at one time it was found growing in prolific forests in Hawai'i and can be boiled, steamed, fried, mashed and made into flour, through the years it lost popularity to the introduced potatoes and yams.
The resurgence of this valued crop can be the answer to food scarcity in the future. Although our islands can grow almost anything that grows anywhere else in the world, our dependence on imports runs at between 80 to 95% depending on the sources checked.
Breadfruit is so versatile that it could fill a major gap in our islands' food supplies. At each the three different festival we have held to date (*) hundreds of little breadfruit trees have been sold, giving hope that eventually the trees will be again found throughout the areas where it grows to best advantage.
Who says breadfruit can't go "international" or "gourmet"? Look at one of the winning recipes below.
Second Place Winner in the Entrée Category garnered enough judge points in healthy ingredients to also win the Healthiest Choice Award.
Entry by Gwen Edwards of Kailua-Kona
'Ulu (Breadfruit) Gnocchi with Hamakua Mushroom Ragout