Chopped Challenge Thursday: Poi, Jicama, Pineapple and Kimchee

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Hawaiian Pork Sliders with Jicama Salsa and Poi

This weeks Chopped Challenge sent me on a whole new adventure, one which turned out to be pretty amazing! After my old neighbor and friend, Thomas Kamakani gave me Poi, I knew an adventure was in front of me.

Not even having the slightest clue what Poi was, I set out to the great land of “google” to learn what this Hawaiian favorite was all about… and where I could possibly find it in San Diego!  Turns out, there was a japanese market, that also had a small section devoted to Hawaiian favorites which carried the ingredient and was only about 10 miles from my house.

I arrived to a rather confusing small village of stores know as Marukai Value, Marukai Market and Marukai Living.

To my credit, if you were looking for food you would probably select “Marukai Market”, correct?  Well, Marukai Living actually holds the Hawaiian gem known as Poi, but I am oh so glad I first stumbled upon Marukai Market. How had I not known about Japanese markets until this point?  It’s like I opened a door to a whole new culinary world!

I have so much to say about the amazingness that was, my first Japanese market experience, that I’m going to save that for another post and get to the Chopped Challenge for this week!

Jicama, Kimchee, Pineapple, Poi

This Hawaiian style mystery basket included the aforementioned Poi from Thomas, Jicama from Krista Lombardi, Pineapple from Jackie Te and Kimchee from Cristina Dotson.

I combined this magical basket of ingredients into Hawaiian Pineapple Kimchee Pulled Pork Sliders, topped with Mango Avocado Jicama Salsa and a Sweet Chili Poi Sauce.

kimchee, honey, brown sugar, soy sauce, white wine vinegar, chinese five spice, pork shoulder, garlic, ginger

Ingredients (Hawaiian Pork)

  • ½ pineapple (chopped)
  • 10 oz kimchi
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 2 tbsp chinese five spice
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger (minced)
  • 4 lb pork shoulder
  • ½ cup teriyaki sauce
  • ½ cup white wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup honey
  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • 2 cups mango avocado jicama salsa (recipe below)
  • 1 cup poi sweet chili sauce (recipe below)
  • 12 hawaiian sweet rolls

Begin by adding the pineapple and kimchi to a crock pot over low heat.

pineapple, kimchee, slow cooker, crock pot, pulled pork, hawaiian pork, hawaiian food

Next, combine the paprika, chinese five spice, brown sugar, garlic and ginger in a small bowl.

Hawaiian Pork Dry Rub

Rub the pork with this mixture then place into the crock pot on top of the pineapple and kimchee.

Slow Cooked Hawaiian Pineapple Kimchee Pork

Next, pour the teriyaki sauce, white wine vinegar, honey and soy sauce into the crock pot.

Crock Pot Hawaiian Pinapple Pork

Turn to high and cook for 5-6 hours.

Half an hour before serving the pork prepare the Mango Avocado Jicama Salsa.

Mango Jicama Salsa Ingredients

Ingredients (Mango Avocado Jicama Salsa)

  • ½ jicama (thinly sliced)
  • ¼ fresh pineapple (chopped)
  • ½ red onion (chopped)
  • ½ mango (chopped)
  • 1 avocado (chopped)
  • 1 lime (juiced)
  • 1 tbsp avocado oil (or olive oil)
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp chives (chopped)

Combine the first 5 ingredients in a medium bowl.  Squeeze the lime juice and drizzle the avocado oil over the salsa. Toss, then sprinkle the black pepper and chives on top.

Mango Avocado Jicama Salsa

Next, mix together 1 cup of poi with 2 tbsp sweet chili sauce.

Sweet Chili Poi Sauce

Now, remove the pork from the crock pot and shred, then place on top of the hawaiian sweet rolls, drizzle with the kimchee, pineapple sauce from the crock pot.

Hawaiian Pulled Pork Sliders

Top with the salsa.

Hawaiian Pulled Pork Sliders with Mango Salsa

The flavor combination here is amazing!

Pineapple Pulled Pork Sliders with Mango Avocado Salsa

Finally, place a little Poi Sweet Chili Sauce on the top of the bun.

Hawaiian Pulled Pork Sliders with Sweet Chili Poi

So the real question is, did I make the Hawaiian’s proud with this dish?

Hawaiian Pork and Poi Sliders

Well, according to my roommate (definitely not Hawaiian, but an avid taste tester of the blog), it was delicious!

Hawaiian Pork Sliders with Sweet Chili Poi and Mango Salsa