Hmmmm, malasada

Malasada was the hot item Tuesday as Kauai celebrated Malasada Tuesday.

“We eat malasada because you know, you pig out on Tuesday (Fat Tuesday) because from Wednesday (Ash Wednesday), it’s fish,” said Carla Garren of Lihue while waiting on her order outside the Times Supermarket in the Kukui Grove Center.

Andrew Farrara got help from Warren Yoshioka in breaking open his box of malasada from Kauai Bakery.

“Pretty soon it’s tomorrow,” he said. gotta eat, now. “All I know is Friday we eat fish and make all the fishermen happy.”

Chelsea Kea, chef and kitchen manager for Times Supermarket, said this is the first year they are doing malasada from the quick tent, which is normally used for grilling.

“It was last-minute kine,” Kea said. “But we were ready from 4 a.m. and it’s been real busy from that time. The only thing I know about Malasada Tuesday is that it goes with Mardi Gras.”

Kauai Malasada, operated by Marlena Bunao, had people waiting for malasada.

“I was ready to serve from 5:30 this morning and it has been nonstop since then,” Bunao said. “This year, my 20th doing Malasada Tuesday, I got help from my daughters who took off from their regular jobs to help. They do all the work with the customers — I just cook.”

Larian Seatz of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho was one of those waiting in the sunshine.

“I had to try this,” Seatz said. “My grandson told his other grandma about how good this was, last year. After I heard him, I said ‘I have to try this, myself.’ I’m ordering both the sugar and cinamon.”

Malasadas arrived in Hawaii with the Portuguese in the 1800s when they were brought in to labor on the sugar plantations. Since then, the delicacy has been adopted into the Hawaii lifestyle along with its practice of Shrove Tuesday and the making of malasadas to use lard and sugar in the house in preparation for Lent.

“Today is not your regular day,” Bunao said. “This is a different kind of day. We’ll probably be sold out by lunch.”

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