The end of June and first week of July have been quite buzy...and I have been buzzing all over...
It all started early in the morning of Sunday last week, a gorgeous clear day, when we drove across the island and enjoyed glorious views of both our big volcanoes.
Mauna Kea shown above with not one little cloud in the sky. I wish I could show the sheer and massive presence of this mountain...The camera is not doing it justice..it is so impressive to the naked eye...
We were on our way to attend the 6th Annual Mango Festival which was held at the Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa in Keauhou.
Our tent location was under the trees and in the path of ocean breezes...couldn't get any better than that!
For the last few years, I have been the organizer-coordinator and served as head judge for the Mango Festivals' Cooking Contests, which are always a lot of fun. The originality and creativity of some of the entries are amazing...
The winner of the Appetizer Category this year also won Best of Show (*) ... Mango Sushi anyone?
After the event, we drove down to Captain Cook to spend the night at the Manago Hotel.
Very low-key, affordable, spotlessly clean and with a view that doesn't quit, the hotel enjoys being a quaint slice of our island's rich history. The original hotel was built in 1917 and through the years has been run by 3 generations of the Manago family.
As many times as we have been guests, I have never taken photos of the place, but besides simple, conventional rooms, the hotel also boasts a Japanese style room with Tatami mats, furo and futon and a lush Japanese garden and koi pond. The back yard is planted in banana, mango, avocado, lychee and even a small peach tree was spotted under our balcony.
On Monday, after a leisurely awakening, coffee and pastries (which we brought with us because the Manago Restaurant is closed on Mondays), we did a 'Costco run' and then home.
During the week, besides my regular 'duties', I have been transcribing, typing and sharing the contest entries in this blog (see links below)
On Friday, we were invited to our friends Cathy and Robert's 4th of July Pool & Potluck Party, which is always fun...we get to see a set of friends we don't see very often...and I got to relax by the pool, under the shade of an umbrella in the beautiful breeze.
This was my contribution to the feast - photo taken by a guest named Angelina. I never got her last name.
Black Bean & Corn Dip
The secret is the citrus and cumin
2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cans kernel corn, drained
1 large chopped red bell pepper
4-5 small chopped Hawaiian chile peppers
2/3 cup lime juice (I used calamondin juice this time)
1 small bunch chopped parsley, watercress, or cilantro
1 small bunch chopped green onions, some of the green added
Garlic infused olive oil, to taste
1 -2 teaspoons Badia Tropical Seasoning (w/o MSG) or to taste
2 teaspoons slightly heaped ground cumin, or to taste
Since we don't care too much for cilantro and my son, really can't eat it, I use parsley or watercress, instead. If I had had a ripe avocado I would have diced some in there also. You can also add diced tomatoes if you wish.
We served them with little 'star' bowl shaped corn tortillas for scooping.
We brought home a little bit of the dip and used it yesterday for lunch, wrapped in warm flour tortillas with melted Havarti cheese and served with a dollop of sour cream...YUM!
Today I finished transcribing and sharing all of the recipes from the entries in the cooking contest.
A little voice is telling me I need to now get buzy again and do laundry or clean the kitchen...but I might ignore that little nagging voice and go read a book instead...after all, tomorrow is another day!
(*) To check on the recipes entered, click on each of the following links: