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Breadfruit Festival Takes Root 2013

Festival Features 'Ulu and Kalo

Breadfruit-Festival-Takes-Root-logo-low-resThe first festival on Kaua'i to celebrate 'ulu (breadfruit) will be held on Sunday, September 15 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the south shore. Breadfruit Festival Takes Root takes place in Po'ipū at the Southshore Visitors Center of the National Tropical Botanical Garden. Parking will be offsite, off the western bypass road near the roundabout, with a free shuttle to the event venue. Admission is free.

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The day's program, which also spotlights kalo (taro), features experts from Kaua'i, Maui, O'ahu, and Hawai'i Island with cooking, cultural, and flour-making demonstrations; and presentations. The program includes breadfruit trees and cookbook sales; music; and keiki activities. Breadfruit- and taro-inspired dishes will be available for purchase.

Celebrity chef Sam Choy will share his expertise on cooking with 'ulu. Cooking demonstrations also include cultural practitioner and farmer Shirley Kauhaihao on selecting and preparing 'ulu; culinary arts teacher Mariposa Blanco making 'ulu poke and 'ulu dough for pizza crust and tamales; Fae Hirayama, author of The Breadfruit Cookbook, on using young immature 'ulu for appetizers; and John Cadman, founder of Pono Pies, on making healthy desserts with 'ulu, kalo, and other locally produced ingredients. Heifara Aiamu will show participants how to cook 'uru (breadfruit) Tahiti-style.

Hands-on demonstrations include Jerry Konanui on how to make 'ulu poi and renowned kapa artist Wesley Sen and expert weaver and educator Sabra Kauka on how to make kapa with 'ulu bark. Additional cultural offerings include Stella Burgess with storytelling and William and Kuulei Biga on coconut plate weaving.

Interspersed throughout the program will be presentations by experts in 'ulu, kalo, and agroforestry:

  • A cultural perspective on kalo diversity - Dr. Kawika Winter, ethnobotanist and director of NTBG’s Limahuli Garden and Preserve
  • An overview of breadfruit in the Pacific and beyond - Dr. Diane Ragone, ethnobotanist and director of NTBG’s Breadfruit Institute
  • Taking breadfruit to the world - Josh Schneider of Cultivaris, a global horticultural company, and Global Breadfruit
  • Abundant and sustainable agroforestry landscapes - Craig Elevitch, founder and director of Agroforestry Net
  • 'Ulu from root to fruit: tree planting, care, and maintenance - Ian Cole, Collections Manager for NTBG’s Breadfruit Institute
  • Kōloa and the unique Kōloa field system - Ted Kawahinehelelani Blake, Executive Director Hui Malama o Kōloa

NTBG staff and volunteers will demonstrate a system of processing 'ulu into flour using a manual shredder, solar drier, and pedal-powered grinder. Attendees are invited to participate.

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'Ulu trees, including three varieties never before available in Hawai'i -- Otea, Puaa, and Piipiia -- and the Ma'afala variety will be available for purchase, with horticultural expert Heidi Leianuenue Bornhorst offering growing tips. Cookbooks on sale include Ho'oulu ka 'Ulu Cookbook, 'Ike 'Āina: From Seed to Table, and The Breadfruit Cookbook.

Food and beverage will be available for purchase. The plate lunch by Mark Oyama, Contemporary Flavors Catering includes Thai green salad with cucumbers, mint, cilantro, chili lime dressing, fried sweet potatoes strings; coconut curry with chicken, breadfruit, eggplant, and bell peppers. His vegetarian option features coconut curry with breadfruit, eggplant, sweet potatoes, and bell peppers. Dessert is Banana 'ulu cake with pineapple cream cheese topping. Poi from Hanalei Poi Company is included.

Taro burgers by Robert Mitnick, Hawaii Taro Company; sweet potato and coconut scones by Kalaheo Café; and coffee from Kauai Coffee Company round out the menu for the day.

Music will be provided by Paul Tokioka, Rhoda Libre, and Mahea Yamashita. Activities will be available for the keiki.

The event is presented by Ho'oulu ka 'Ulu—Revitalizing Breadfruit, a project of the Hawai'i Homegrown Food Network and the Breadfruit Institute of the National Tropical Botanical Garden. The project’s goal is to revitalize 'ulu as an attractive, delicious, nutritious, abundant, affordable, and culturally appropriate food that addresses Hawai'i's food security issues.

The first festival on Kaua'i featuring breadfruit is made possible through grants from the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.

The shuttle from offsite parking across from The Shops at Kukui'ula starts at 8:30 a.m. No coolers or beach chairs will be accommodated. This is an alcohol-and-drug-free event.

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