Dishes For And From The Heart

Diana Helfand
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Wednesday - June 16, 2010
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Kamaaina families have been enjoying Diamond Bakery’s soda crackers, Saloon Pilots and the whole range of baked treats since 1921.

There’s also a sentimental attachment to the products. Brent Kunimoto, company CEO, associates them with his childhood and his grandmother, who lived near the bakery and shared freshly made crackers and cookies with the family.

Here Kunimoto shares two recipes developed with the American Heart Association with which to enjoy your favorite Diamond Bakery crackers. Enjoy!

SHISO PESTOMARINATED OPAH In partnership with American Heart Association-Hawaii Chapter

For Pesto:

* 10 shiso leaves, chopped
* 1 shallot, chopped
* 1 tablespoon pine nuts, toasted
* 2 teaspoons low-sodium shoyu
* 2 tablespoons lemon juice
* 1/4 teaspoon lemon zest
* 1 teaspoon ume plum paste
* 1 ounce (2 tablespoons) spinach
* 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
* 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until well-combined.

Makes eight servings.

For Fish:

* 1 pound opah (or other firm, white fish)

Cut fish into 4-ounce portions. Marinate in 4 teaspoons of pesto for about 10 minutes. In a hot skillet, cook the fish until browned and just cooked through, about six to seven minutes. Serve the fish topped with two teaspoons pesto.

Makes four servings.


* 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into bite-size pieces
* 1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
* 6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
* 4 ounces mushrooms, quartered
* 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
* 1 teaspoon low-sodium shoyu
*4 bay leaves
* 10 peppercorns, partially crushed
* 2/3 cup low-fat, low-sodium chicken broth
* 3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
* 6 cups baby arugula (or tatsoi or baby spinach)

In a pot on medium-high heat, briefly sauté chicken pieces in 2 teaspoons olive oil to sear slightly, then add beans, garlic, mushrooms, vinegar, shoyu, bay leaves and peppercorns. Bring to a boil, reduce to medium heat. Cook, partially covered, until the liquid is evaporated, about 10 minutes.

Add the chicken broth, scraping the bottom of the pan.

Remove from the heat and add the remaining teaspoon olive oil.

In a large bowl, place the arugula, top with the hot chicken mixture and toss. Serve immediately.

(Diana Helfand, author of “Hawaii Light and Healthy” and “The Best of Heart-y Cooking,” has taught nutrition in the Kapiolani Community College culinary arts program.)

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