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"We'll just eat a lot of fruit"

This is an Erin report :) I'm officially a contributor now.

"We'll just eat a lot of fruit." I'm pretty sure I said something to that effect before we moved here. I'd heard and read that food was more expensive on the islands, but never believed it could be that much more than buying food at Andronico's in Berkeley. Also faced with the strong urge to drop a few pounds for the 356 day/year bathing suit wardrobe, I thought that we'd just cut out a lot of processed foods, and we'd stock up on produce and lean protein.

I'd failed to consider that much of what's available in the supermarkets here is shipped from somewhere in South America (via the mainland), and that I haven't seen a single cow since we've been here (we did see plenty of "free range" chickens at the roadside cafe on the north shore - Owen spent much of our lunch hour chasing them among all of the tables). Anyhow, I have found myself faced with a grocery shopping challenge: wanting to support local, sustainable agriculture yet met by the grocery budget constraints of a one-income family. Grocery shopping adventures have so far included:

  • Foodland in Waikiki: way overpriced. no one should ever pay $8.99/lb for grapes
  • Costco: usual for everything except produce. that $12.99 flat of strawberries is $6.49 where I'm from (and I'm pretty sure they're from California)
  • Times Supermarket: I feel we've hit the jackpot with this one. My mom and I stumbled upon it yesterday afternoon - no sign other than a "t" with a winking smiley face. Something about its boxy shape made me make a quick u-turn and pull into the parking lot. Fresh caught mahi-mahi fillets $3 each and milk for less than $8/gallon. Also, Ewa grown green beans for $1.29/lb and Hawaiian-grown pineapple (Foodland's pineapple was from Ecuador). OH! and local sweet potatos - their skin has a purplish hue :)

On my food to-do list are:
  • Manoa People's Open Market. This is the neighborhood farmer's market that happens Monday mornings from 6:45-7:45 AM. I am still pretending to sleep at this time.
  • Veggie box from natural foods store in Kailua. It's about a 20 minute drive, but I heard through the grapevine (Australian Astronomer) that they distribue local and organic veggie boxes for $25/week and the pick up is Friday. Perhaps Fridays will become our day in Kailua...
  • Get a garden started at our new place!


karinms said…
Hi Erin! This is really interesting. I request more posts about what you guys are eating! I can't believe the pinapple at Foodland's was from Ecuador. That seems crazy. Is there a pineapple season? How has the local pineapple been? Mmmmm, pineapple. Mmmmmm, fresh caught mahi mahi. :-) Fresh fish may be the ticket in terms of lean protein. I bet you get some nice sushi there. I saw some info about CSA on hawaii at Anyways, great post! Looking forward to more!! -Karin
karinms said…
P.S. I am into the second series of poses at yoga!!
erinjohn said…
woah karin! yeah for more postures! congrats! so are you doing the sun salutation A&B, or are you beyond that now? i'm so excited that you're into it :) i found a yoga place here and the teacher is amazing. i'm going to try and get up early and go tomorrow!
mama mia said…
That late night trip to Foodland, Waikiki was a downward spiral, leading up to a tearful, "I miss my stores!" that just about broke my heart. I am glad to see that you have risen to the shopping challenge, as would any self-respecting Pousson gal. Still thinking about that yummy salmon salad you fixed for I am off to the kitchen for some "ceweeol niyot".
Anonymous said…
"ceeweol niyot"? Can we get an Owen translator in here?
JohnJohn said…
"ceeweol niyot" = cereal with milk

Duh! :)

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