I get home sick whenever the New Year rolls around.
For someone who loves food and every aspect of it, the annual celebration that takes place in the home I grew up in has always been my favorite holiday. Family, togetherness, longevity, good health and a fresh start are just some of the meanings that the food symbolizes during this grand event!
Days before the party, the menu is planned and the food is purchased. It’s really the only reason my dad has two refrigerators and a full sized freezer at his house. Then the production begins at a slow pace… day by day, a little is done. My mom makes a menu and uses it as her list. She has done so many of these parties, the whole organization of the event is tucked safely in her head. Words will not do this story justice…which is why I documented this with photos! Here goes!
It all begins with this list!
Sushi making takes place the day before. A whole gang of family comes over and we literally make a couple hundred sushi rolls! We only make two kinds: Takuan (pickled radish) and Tuna Maki. Everyone takes home a few rolls and the rest is for the big day!
Tons of maki!
Grandma rolls each maki in waxed paper and places them in soda boxes for service later on.
Nishime is made in HUGE vat! The konbu is hand-knotted by grandma! ❤
Konbu knotting session.
The tuna is bought and cut up for sashimi! Delicious!
Along with a couple freshly caught Onaga, that some may or may not like. =)
My uncle usually grows Mizuna in foam planter boxes and drops them off the day before. Beautiful!
The mochi is made, the modern way! We have two steamers going!
Grandma portions the An (sweet bean paste) to stuff inside the mochi.
While my mom has a watchful eye on the mochi production line…
The HOT mochi is put into this mechanism that portions and cuts the mochi! It is then tossed on a rice-floured surface. You need to work quick! As the mochi cools, it becomes harder to stuff and mold.
My mom collects soda case boxes, my grandma lines them with waxed paper dusted with rice flour, and the mochi is stored at room temperature until service! Left overs are frozen and are delicious fried up in a pan with butter!
This was my friend, Erica Mcgee’s idea to stuff apple bananas into the mochi. It was so delicious!
decorations are bought…
These beets are from my sister’s farm on Kauai!
One year, we even made FARMER’S CHEESE!
Tako with miso sauce!
Shiitake mushrooms for the homemade soup broth for the Ozoni (mochi soup). And of course we use our homemade mochi too! ❤
Lotus root for the nishime!
Homemade cucumber, carrot and daikon namasu.
Toshikoshi soba! Eaten on New Year’s Eve. Also known as the “year end” soba.
prepping for everyone…
Kari (my sister), Jarl and I made signs for the guests so they know what they are eating…
of course, people buy already made food…which is just as delicious! Here are some baked manapua.
and my personal favorite…Jin Dui!
Family and friends come and hang out for both days (the eve and the day)…they help with cooking, they help with eating…
Then it’s service time!
FAMILY TIME! ❤