One of the best things to do on your romantic vacation on Kauai is to sample the local fruits and vegetables at the Sunshine Market. A great vacation experience is to step out of the ordinary and push your own boundaries and for some tasting new foods came be as eventful as landing on the moon. Even for me, after thirty years on Kauai I beam ear to ear when I find tropical fruits and vegetables that I have never tasted. Our local farmers market is the best place to explore for flowers, fruits, and vegetables, a real treat for your taste buds, and your wallet will smile also.
To think that this Kauai mainstay may never have happened if it wasn’t for the demise of the sugar industry fifteen years ago in Koloa. With the closure of McBryde Sugar in 1996 the County of Kauai and the sugar company were concerned with the spike in unemployment. A cooperative agreement developed where the company leased lands at greatly reduced rates to redundant workers to begin an agricultural operation to assist in their transition from sugar. McBryde Sugar Co. also provided the farmers with a great retail location along Poipu road where there was ample parking and high visibility for the first ten years. This locale was quite successful and the County realized that a rolling market would better suit the farmers and expose more of Kauai’s residents and visitors to their offerings.
For our Kauai vacation rental guests the flexibility of preparing meals en suite has made Kauai affordable for a great many of them. Having choices is what has made the vacation rental industry so popular in the last ten years. The Koloa Sunshine market kicks off at the Anne Knudsen Park about 1 mile from the Suites every Monday at noon. There is always a crowd and the best priced fruits and veggies go quickly. Bring a knapsack it will free up your hands to try the great fruit samples that the vendors offer. Here is a list of my favorite fruits:
Apple bananas, also known as finger bananas are known for their apple like scent. Their sugar content is not as high as their mushier cousin, the Cavendish variety that most of the world is familiar with. But what they give up in sugar content to their cousin they far surpass it in tanginess. Their shelf life is much greater than the Cavendish and when the skin is completely black the fruit is white and delicious.
Sunrise papayas, this variety was created in the plant labs at the University of Hawaii it has become the most popular variety for its eye appeal and sweetness. The strawberry color of the meat provides a visually delectable backdrop to the black seeds. Squeeze a little lime on the fruit to bring out the flavors of peach and orange.
Low acidic Pineapple, ever since this pineapple was produced in the plant laboratories at the University of Hawaii it has taken over production in most of the world. Its high sugar content and greatly reduced acid content has converted a great number of people who shied away from the most commercially viable of plants in the Bromeliad family.
On a hot day there is nothing quite like exotic mangosteen or the slightly sweet starfruit just out of the refrigerator, it just picks me up biting into these juicy fruits.
If you miss the Monday noon farmers market there is one held weekly at Kukuiula Village located only steps from our Kauai rentals every Thursday from 4-6pm. It is a carnival like atmosphere with farmers sharing the inner courtyard with bakers and honey producers. There is a Hawaiian band playing great music and cooking demonstrations by the chefs at Island Foods.
If you happen to miss either of these dates Island Foods in the Village offers great fruits and they are opened daily. They source from some of the best organic farmers and only present the best offerings at great prices.
Please tell us what your favorite fruit is and we will share it with the world.