Chefs from four of Wailea's premier restaurants are combining their talents, time and resources in support of the school garden movement on Maui.
It all started in April, when the chefs led a workshop with more than 700 students on healthful recipes at the Kihei Elementary School campus.
"We held the workshop on the nearly quarter-acre of garden space in the heart of the school campus," says Kirk Surry of Grow Some Good.
Ferraro’s Chef de Cuisine Nicholas Porreca (from left), Private Maui Chef Owner/Chef Dan Fiske, Spago Chef Cameron Lewark, and Capische?/Il Teatro Chef de Cuisine Christoper Kulis get some good things growing with educational school gardens on Maui.
JESS CRAVEN photo
"Students harvested as well as prepared fresh ingredients from what we call the Pizza Garden and Gardens of the World to make wood-fired pizza in a mobile oven that was supplied by Outrigger Pizza," he continues. "The chefs also stir-fried veggies for Asian lettuce cups."
The Grow Some Good chefs then held a private fund raiser for the school garden at Ferraro's Bar e Ristorante at Four Seasons Resort Maui in May.
The next Grow Some Good affair will be held at Capische? at Hotel Wailea on Friday, kicking off with cocktails in the garden at 6:30 p.m., which will followed by a sit-down dinner at 7 p.m.
"We're going to do some passed pupu in the Capische garden with food we grow at the hotel," says Chef de Cuisine Chris Kulis, who with boss, chef-owner Brian Etheredge, is hosting the event.
Sommelier James Maher of Johnson Bros. of Hawaii will pour all organic Tarantas sparkling white and rose Spanish wines as well as Bouchaine gewurztraminer and pinot noir varietals.
"The Hotel Wailea has a fabulous garden with mangos, star fruit, bananas and we even raise honey bees," says Kulis. "For passed pupu, we'll serve our own eggplant involtini with soy bean, wasabi and tomato; and fried beet ravioli along with Hawaiian rancher beef carpaccio."
Other courses will include rabbit terrine with lemongrass, pickled garden vegetables, and mustard-sage cream; and crispy skin Maui snapper with turnip puree, roasted baby carrot, and horseradish tortellinis with Kula Meyer lemon.
"We grow the horseradish on property and it will be the first time we'll use it at a meal here," Kulis says.
All proceeds go to both Kihei Elementary School and Lokelani Intermediate School gardens for keiki from kindergarten through eighth grade.
"The series showcases recipes co-created with students," says Surry. "Another dinner coming up will be cooked by Chef Cameron Lewark at Spago on Sept. 15 and we'll do one with all of the chefs the first quarter of next year."
"At the schools, we do gardens with mini terraces and each one represents a different country's foods," says Surry. "For instance, we have a Filipino garden with wing beans, calabasa, and bitter melon."
The chefs have also created a green bean teepee, under which kids walk and pick beans off of the bamboo poles. Another fun idea is the green smoothie garden, which grows kale, mint and other greens to add to cold whipped drinks.
"Kids may not want to eat a salad, but they sure love to slurp a smoothie," says Surry. "We have a canoe plant garden with the foods that arrived here with the Polynesians such as kalo (taro) and olena (turmeric) and much more."
"Fresh fruits and vegetables should be for everyone, not just for those who can afford to buy them at stores. So we're sharing with parents how to grow food and giving them starter plants to take home."
Cost of the Capische? dinner is $98 per person, which includes four-course meal, dessert and wine pairings. Call 879-2224 or RSVP@growsomegood.org.