Sunday, December 7, 2008

Hawaiian Haystacks

So before I share the recipe we're going to have a little discussion about this dish. First off, this recipe cries out for you to experiment. Put whatever you like in it. Think something will be good? Try it, you never know. The basic combination is kind of odd, but together it's good stuff. When my girlfriend was eating it last night she took a bite, said "this is weird" then proceeded to clean out her bowl. I still remember the first time I had these. It was at a friends house, back in elementary school. I remember thinking "Man, what a strange thing." Then eating it and thinking "Yep, weird." Then going back for seconds. So, have I scared you off yet by telling you how odd this stuff is? No? All right, let's do this thing.

This is how I make them: a pile of rice with chicken and gravy, pineapple, cashews and chow mein noodles. But like I said, you can put whatever you like on them. Tomatoes, celery, peppers, almonds, cheese, olives, anything you can think of. Once it's assembled you take this nice, orderly, layered dish and mix it all up. Then you eat it. Now, we should probably talk about the gravy. I used jarred chicken gravy. Yeah. I did. I admit it and I'm not ashamed! Well, not very ashamed anyway. But it was actually pretty good. Some people use cream of chicken/mushroom soup for it. You could also cook the chicken in a pan, getting some good fond and make some gravy with that. A white wine pan sauce would be delightful, although a little fancy pants for this kind of thing. This time I had some braised chicken (braised in chicken broth, rosemary, thyme, sage, parsley and onion) that I just pulled into pieces and heated together with the gravy.Once again, use anything you think would be good. You don't have to use chicken either, you could use pork just as easily. Or leave out the meat altogether and have it be vegetarian. Anyway, here is a list of things you can start with and the basic method for how you make these. I hesitate to even call it a recipe... but whatever. Here it is.

Make a pile of rice and top it with any of the following stuff:
chicken chunks
pork chunks
gravy or cream of chicken/mushroom/celery/whatever soup
pineapple chunks
tomato chunks
chow mein noodles
pepper chunks
green onion slices
celery chunks
shredded cheese
corn niblets
or anything else your heart desires


Reeni said...

I'm loving it, just the way you made it looks perfect to me!

Jenny said...

You've nailed this one, we are haystack lovers over here in AZ! Great dinner for sure!

Bob said...

Reeni: Thanks! You should try it, it's good stuff.

Jenny: Thanks! That's cool, I didn't know they were that widespread.

Emily said...

I think it sounds good. I've never had this before.

The Brutal Gourmet said...

I can't believe I have never made these. So many of my favorite things (like rice and flexibility!)


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