We love football season here in Hawaii just like everywhere else. It’s a great time to get together with friends to watch the big game, or even go to the big game. When it comes to having a game watching party, there are a few foods that we love making for our guests.
There are two things that are synonymous with Hawaii: Aloha shirts and Spam musubi. So it should be no surprise that Spam musubis are a staple to any party. They’re easy to make, easy to transport, fun to eat, and enjoyed by everyone who doesn’t hate Spam. Kids love them which allows you to make more grown up foods for the adults at the party. The two most common types of Spam musubi that we make are the plain ones and the teriyaki ones. The plain ones are as simple as it gets. You just need rice and slices of spam. The teriyaki ones differ in that the spam is dipped in a sweet teriyaki sauce (soy sauce and sugar) before being assembled into the musubi. People do make very advanced spam musubis so just check the internet for difference recipes and examples.
Cool spam musubi with spam on both sides!
Spam musubis are easy-to-eat finger foods.
Poke is another staple at any local party. Parties and poke go hand in hand in Hawaii. You’ll rarely go to a local party and someone’s house and not have poke. A variety of pokes are available at most supermarkets in Hawaii. The most common are limu ahi and shoyu ahi poke. But there are many others including varieties of pokes made from octopus, crab, and different kinds of fish like salmon, hamachi, swordfish, aku, etc. When we go to a party, we’ll usually get a pound of shoyu ahi poke and either another pound of tako poke or spicy tuna poke for variety. And oh yeah, poke goes really well with beer! And sake.
Two of our faves! (shoyu ahi poke in the front, spicy ahi in the back)
Kalua Pork Sandwich
Lately we’ve been making kalua pork sandwiches. If you're planning a Hawaiian themed party or luau, you'll definitely want to serve kalua pork. But you can also change things up by making kalua pork sliders. If we’re lazy, we just buy the pre-made kalua pork from the store. If we’re feeling ambitious, we’ll make it from scratch in a slow cooker. Once we have the meat nailed down, all we need are King’s Hawaiian Bread rolls or burger buns, bbq sauce (we like Kilauea Fire hot sauce), and cole slaw on the side. The saltiness of the meat, the tanginess of the sauce, and the sweetness of the bread make for an explosion of flavor in your mouth.
Kalua pork sliders with King's Hawaiian sweet rolls and Kilauea Fire hot sauce
Spinach Dip in a Sourdough Bowl
Another crowd favorite is spinach dip in a sourdough bowl. All you need for this is the Hidden Valley Ranch Dip mix, sour cream, a box of frozen spinach, and a round sourdough loaf. Follow the instructions on the back of the dip package to make the dip. Then cut off the top and inside of the sourdough loaf. Cut this piece into cubs and fill the bread bowl with the dip. Serve the bowl in a large platter with the bread cubes around it. You will run out of bread before you run out of dip so be sure to have a bag of chips or something else to eat the dip with. We usually serve this with a giant bag of Maui Onion kettle chips but you can use whatever you have access to.
Your friends will be impressed with this spinach dip in a sourdough bread bowl.🤙
We love malasadas for dessert after stuffing ourselves with salty foods on this list. A malasada is a Portuguese donut without a hole and is usually coated with sugar. Leonard’s Bakery is the most well-known place to get malasadas on Oahu with their instantly recognizable red and white striped malasada trucks around the island. There are also bakeries that sell malasadas or similar desserts around the mainland. These pastries are both tasty and easy to eat making them great party food.
Getting malasadas from a Leondard's Bakery malasada truck
Fresh hot malsadas are simply divine and are a perfect food for your next game party!
The culture of Hawaii isn't famous for no reason. Every year, thousands of tourists flock to the small islands to get a taste of the rich culture found only in Hawaii. To this day, the energy and spirit of Aloha flow through strongly the islands of Hawaii, allowing it to radiate energies of love and compassion for others.