Posts tagged ‘Hawaii’

March 3, 2012

Happy Girls’ Day!

Happy Hina Matsuri! Today, I hope you take a few moments to recognize the incredible contributions of the females in your life.

quote wall frame proverbs 31-25 bible verse she is clothed in strength

Last year I made carrot cake cookies on Girls’ Day. 

This year, being hapai has given me a different appreciation for [a] being a girl and [b] the girls in my life (because I just may be carrying a girl…).  I’ve been feeling the urge to connect to my ancestors a lot lately, so it just seemed appropriate this year to make something a bit more traditional to celebrate Hina Matsuri. 

The irony is that I won’t eat this recipe myself, as it’s chalk-full of white rice flour, white sugar, and even food coloring.  Nonetheless, traditions aren’t always healthy (and moderation is key!).  Plus, I’ve learned over the years that giving is much more rewarding than receiving, and the recipients of this chi chi dango recipe definitely appreciated it! 

Chi chi dango is a local sweet rice treat that is popular especially around Girls’ Day.  When I was a kid in school, someone would always bring homemade chi chi dango wrapped individually in wax paper for the class.  I decided to make a batch for Mr. Ben’s classroom as well as for a non-profit today. 


Chi Chi Dango



  • 3 1/2 c mochiko flour
  • 2 1/2 c sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • potato/corn starch


  • 1 [13.5oz] can coconut milk
  • 2 c water
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • food coloring [optional – pink + green are most often used]


Preheat oven to 350.  Line a 9×13’’ baking pan with parchment paper or grease.

In a mixing bowl, whisk or sift all the dry ingredients together.

In another large mixing bowl, whisk together all the wet ingredients except food coloring.

Add the dry ingredients into the wet slowly while continuing to whisk, being sure to keep the mixture smooth [you don’t want any lumps]. 

Now stir in your food coloring [if using]. 

Pour the mixture into the baking pan.


[I made one batch with two colors for the kiddos.]

Cover tightly with foil [this is very important!] and bake for 1 hour. 

Sprinkle starch over top of the mochi as soon as it comes out of the oven [to keep from hardening], and allow the chi chi dango to cool completely before placing it on a starched cutting board and using a plastic knife to cut it into pieces. 


Dust off as much starch as possible and wrap individual pieces in wax paper, twisting the ends to keep everything closed. 

Enjoy!  [Don’t let the little girls eat too many of these at once or their little heads may explode from sugar.]


Yesterday, Ben and I spent our evening together covered in starch, cutting and wrapping three batches of these goodies[green, white, and pink] for Women Helping Women’s Big Hina Matsuri Sale today.  If you’re around Kahului, go check out the awesome sales at ReVive Boutique happening all day!  And as a bonus, pick up some chi chi dango. Winking smile 

Cheers to all the girls out there!  May we never forget just how powerful and beautiful we truly are. 

Aloha Pumehana. Whether you’re here to find balance, wholesome recipes or inspiration, I hope you enjoy the posts.  Please subscribe to Green Plate Dinners to receive automatic updates and be the first to read new posts for free!

February 21, 2012

Scenes From the City

This long weekend was glorious. 

Ben + I took the 20 minute flight over to O`ahu to visit family and friends, celebrate the 4th [!!!] birthday of my amazing  niece, and do a bit of maternity shopping. 

Before I knew it, it was already Monday and I realized I had only taken a handful of photos.  Nonetheless, here’s what we got up to this weekend:


[Jaylen: “Aunty Haley I thought you were bringing your baby with you in your belly.”  Be still my heart!]


[Petting a dolphin at Sea Life Park for Jaylen’s birthday celebration!]


[Catching up with good friends (who we don’t get to see nearly enough!), and watching the Oregon Ducks annihilate the Rainbow Warriors at baseball (we won 14 to 4)].  


[Of course, we had to check out Target + Babies R Us for maternity and baby stuff.  Holy moly, talk about overwhelming!  Ben and I were so grateful to have my cousin + his wife with us… they were able to tell us what we really need.]


[Preggy parking!]


[This baby is already spoiled!  We came home with multiple newborn outfits, a blanket + stuffed animal for the little one from Aunty Jina, Uncle Cory + Jaylen.  Aren’t those duck feet just the cutest thing you’ve ever seen???]

The greatest thing about this weekend was getting to spend time with loved ones.  My family has always been really tight, so it was beyond special to be able to just hang with my brother and cousins for a few days again.  Between my bro’s massages [he gives the BEST!] and just being able to wake my sweet niece and have full on conversations with her [!!], I couldn’t have asked for a better long weekend. 


We got back yesterday and today I’ve got a list of to-do’s that’s pretty out of this world.  So worth it. 

Aloha Pumehana.
Whether you’re here to find balance, wholesome recipes or inspiration, I hope you enjoy the posts.  Please subscribe to Green Plate Dinners to receive automatic updates and be the first to read new posts for free!


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