Hello Friends and Family,

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Farmer's Market Maui

One of the real treats for the Maui visitor is a stop at the Farmer's Market Maui. The produce is local, fresh and top quality. Oh, and did I mention it is typically cheaper than Safeway?

There are two locations. One is in Honokowai (between Ka`anapali Beach and Kapalua). The long-time repeat visitor will recall that they formerly sold their produce under tents on a parking lot. They still do three mornings per week (MWF) from 7AM to 11AM. However, they now also have a storefront — in what used to be (as I recall) the Honokowai General Store.

The second location is at the north end of Kihei in what used to be Suda Store (former home of fantastic chow fun). Both stores have normal "store hours".

You can get current information at this "Best of Maui" link.

For us old timers, the image below is what we think of as the Farmer's Market Maui. There is still good reason (beyond nostalgia) to get there early when the tents are still up. Some of the produce is so popular that little will be left for sale in the store. But do not worry, the stores have a wider selection of produce and related merchandise.

If you are staying in a condo, you can obtain many of the items you might need for the informal meals that you can prepare in your kitchen. The condo where I stay and many others also offer BBQ grills where you can plop down that steak, chicken, Ahi tuna or even Maui-style kalbi ribs. This is the best place to purchase the rest of the meal.

Ah, here is one of my favorite treats — apple bananas. This variety has more taste than the bananas we purchase on the mainland. This species intrinsically has more flavor but also the fruit is picked when ripe or nearly so — unlike those on the mainland which are grown in Central America, picked green, shipped to the U.S. and gassed to make them turn yellow. Result of such maltreatment of bananas is "no taste".

Don't go away. Here are the strawberry papayas. This variety was developed at the University of Hawai`i for the local growing conditions. The flesh is slightly pink — thus the name "strawberry" or "sunrise" papaya. I think they have a nicer favor than that regular papayas and a cleaner finish on the palate.

My normal breakfast on Maui is half a papaya, cereal and milk followed by an apple banana. Oh yes, it is best eaten sitting on the lanai looking at Napili Bay and the Pacific beyond. Life does not get any better than that.

And did I forget to mention that they give free samples. Once new visitors taste the strawberry papaya, they buy them. That's why the storefront rarely has any for sale — they are all sold under the tents.

And it is not just tropical fruit but here some locally grown tomatoes. These are more like what you might raise in your home garden — big, ripe, juicy, tasty tomatoes.

Corn? Yep, corn. Most folks do not know that much of the seed corn used in the U.S. is grown in Hawai`i — formerly much was grown on Maui (some still is) and also I noted large fields on Moloka`i. The reason for this is that modern hybrid corn requires multiple generations of cross-breeding to get the final seed. Because of the climate here, that can be accomplished in one year.

But wait until you taste it. I was floored when they first offered me a few kernels cut right off the cob. Raw corn? Try it — it is great. If you buy a few ears, it just takes a little warming in the microwave or a few minutes on the grill (leave the husk on in both cases) to heat them up.

You can also find some local baked goods. By the way, that Maui Pineapple Bread is terrific.

Also for sale are a variety of locally produced jams and honey. Do try the poha (my favorite) and strawberry guava. Heaven on earth.

Just for the record, here is the storefront in Honokowai. So if you cannot drag yourself to the Farmer's Market early enough or on the right day, you can still stop in here and get some yummy stuff as well.

Life is good.

B. David

P. S., All photos and text © B. David Cathell Photography, Inc. — www.bdavidcathell.com