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We Go Eat: A Mixed Plate From Hawai‘i’s Food Culture

We Go Eat: A Mixed Plate From Hawai‘i’s Food Culture, published by the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities and edited by Susan Yim, is an anthology of articles, short stories and poetry that reflects how food defines us in this state–from simple local food to Hawai‘i Regional Cuisine, SPAM and poke, oxtail soup or laulau and poi.

We Go Eat offers an entertaining and informative look at how food has shaped life in the islands.  Topics range from a memoir of summers as a packer at the pineapple cannery; a quest for good, simple local food; Zippy’s Zip Pac personality test; Hawai‘i’s first celebrity chef; Hawaiian cuisine in America during the Cold War; Vietnamese New Year in Hawai‘i; a life-long affection for SPAM; and much more.  More than just a delicious take-out order with ample portions, this “mixed plate” describes a local style of eating, sharing, and remembering in our unique island community.

Among the 31 contributors to the anthology are such well-known writers as Betty Shimabukuro, Lee Cataluna, Kaui Philpotts, Joan Namkoong, Lee Siegel, John Wythe White, Cynthia Oi, Lee Tonouchi, Catherine E. Toth, Wing Tek Lum, Cathy Song and Bob Dye.

Grant Kagimoto of Cane Haul Road provided art for the cover.  Ten of Cane Haul Road’s most popular food-related designs also appear in the book.

The 138-page softcover book sells at Native Books/Nā Mea Hawai‘ionline or in the store (Ward Warehouse, 1050 Ala Moana Blvd., Ste. 1000, Hon., HI 96814)–for $14.95.  Copies may also be purchased though the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities.

For more information about purchasing a book, please contact our director of grants and special projects, Stacy Hoshino, at (808) 469-4551 or