These two recipes make the basis for a wonderful luau or Hawaiian party.  They are also fine for trying out anytime you have some fresh fish and want to try something tropical and different. 


Banana leaves give a wonderful flavor to anything that is cooked in them.  Take a few new, un-split leaves and slice down the large stem, separating half of the leaf from the main stem.  Then do the other side.  Be sure to wash the leaves first.  Now blanch the leaves by putting them large end first into some boiling or very hot water, gently folding the leave into the water as you go.  The leave will become soft and pliable as it is blanched in this manner.  It is now ready to take out of the water to dry.  Use tongs to assist you. 


Enjoy… Rick Yessayian



Coconut rice Recipe

                                COCONUT RICE
 Recipe By     : 
 Serving Size  : 6    Preparation Time :0:00
 Categories    : Side Dish                        Thai
                 Rice                             Vegetarian
   Amount  Measure       Ingredient -- Preparation Method
 --------  ------------  --------------------------------
    3       c            Long-grain rice
    4       c            Coconut milk
    1 1/2   c            Water
      1/2   ts           Salt
    1       t            Sugar
   Wash the rice & drain.  Place in a heavy pot, add the
   milk, water, salt & sugar, mix, cover & bring to a
   boil.  Let it boil for 3 to 5 minutes. Reduce the heat
   to low & cook for 20 minutes, until done. A richer
   flavour can be obtained by increasing the amount of
   coconut milk & decreasing the amount of water.
  You may wish to use more sugar for a sweeter taste.   


Grilled Banana Leaf Wrapped Fish
Recipe courtesy Emeril Lagasse 1999

Recipe Summary
Yield: 4 servings

·         1/2 cup olive oil

·         1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

·         1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme

·         Salt

·         Freshly ground black pepper

·         4 (6 to 8-ounce) bass fillets or other firm white fish

·         16 thin slices of fresh lemon

·         8 sprigs of fresh thyme

·         8 large banana leaves, soaked in water

·         12 toothpicks, (soaked in water)

·         1 tablespoon olive oil

·         4 cups julienne assorted vegetables, (tomatoes, onions, carrots, mushrooms, etc,)

Preheat the grill. In a small mixing bowl, add the oil, lemon juice and thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Mix well. Season the fish with salt and pepper. Brush both sides of the fish with the lemon mixture. Lay the lemon slices and thyme over the top of each fish. Cross two of the banana leaves, forming a cross. Place the fish in the center of the leaves. Wrap the fish in the leaves, securing the fish with toothpicks. Place the fish pouches on a low grill. Cook for 4 to 6 minutes on each side. In a saute pan, over medium heat, add the oil. When the oil is hot, add the vegetables. Season with salt and pepper. Saute for 3 to 4 minutes. To serve, place the fish in the center of each plate. Remove the toothpicks, exposing the fish. Serve the vegetables around the fish.