Pa’i’ai Taro Waffles – Eat Local Maui Challenge

The EAT LOCAL MAUI Challenge was held from September 12-18 this year and damn did we rock it!

I only ate foods that were foraged/grown/raised in Hawai’i… 100% baby! So many people really stepped up to the Challenge this time around and it was incredible to be inspired by and build community with others who see the value of eating local.

If you’re not on social media or are looking for more info on where to source local ingredients, check out the Resource Guide of Project Locavore. And of course, eating local isn’t just for those on Maui, it’s a movement y’all… in the right direction! Comment about your 100% local dishes, I would love to see what you’re eating that’s local to your area.

Day 1


The first morning of the challenge I made pa’i’ai waffles.

Little did I know how popular they would become… so many participants tried and loved what is one of the easiest recipes on the planet! I used coconut oil from Hawai’i Nut Oils to make sure they didn’t stick, then just plopped some of Kahumoku Family Farms pa’i’ai (pounded taro) onto the waffle iron to cook. That’s it!


Foraged chanca piedra (Phyllanthus debilis), cardamom leaves, and blue butterfly pea flowers from my garden, ginger root from Oko’a Farms.

Learn more about the medicinal benefits of Chanca Piedra here.

Phew, well challenge isn’t in the name for nothin’!! I’ve had two fails today, but enough wins to definitely still have a happy and full belly. Zeb (my 7 yr old) and I opened 4 coconuts, 3 were rotten, so had to shift some plans around both for food today as well as now having to carve out time this week to get more nuts and process them.

The next fail was having to throw out a stinky rotten attempt at clarifying pig lard. I traded two 5-gallon buckets of kiawe beans I’d foraged for a bunch of venison and was gifted a huge amount of lard… but my gas ran out twice during the cook and some extended sit times outside has me throwing away this precious food. Luckily, I had cut off some pieces of the meat that were still attached to the lard, which got cooked into lunch and was delicious.


Spanish needles greens (foraged), pork (gifted), Maui onion & sweet potato from Down to Earth, dried persimmons (gifted from my Aunty in Kula), garlic from Kupa`a Farm, celery & purple carrots from Oko`a Farm, black pepper from Greenwell Farms, salt from Pure Kona Deep Sea Salt. I had some HI Spice sambal with it as well.

100% local. Kid-approved.


Wild foraged Java plum fruit shave ice with lime juice and honey, find the recipe “Java Plum Granita” in the Savage Kitchen App

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