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Yap!  That’s where The Sous Chef and I landed on Tuesday evening! I can’t tell you how excited I am to be here, a place that through the years I have heard so much about and dreamed of visiting someday.

An opportunity of a life time presented itself a month an half ago when our friends Jon and Elena offered for us to joined them here while they spent the summer on the island. Jon’s mom, who lives here full time, is away for the summer which leaves us a nice two bedroom condo overlooking the ocean to share.

So we decided to take the opportunity and come out and play.  The past month and half was a very busy one for me since I had to not only plan and cook the recipes that I posted on a weekly basis, but also the ones that I will be posting while here.

For the next few weeks while I am here I will still be posting Persian recipes, but also, once a week I will be posting about my experience here on the island. I have a feeling that my personal friends will enjoy this format much more than my travel update emails that lack pictures!

On our first day here we made our way down to the beach for some swimming and snorkeling.  For someone who has lived in So Cal for 20 years and is an ocean swimmer, I can’t tell you the excitement of swimming where you can see the bottom of the ocean and oh my the warmth of the water.  Snorkeling around Catalina is great fun, but here? A whole different story.  Here are some pictures of the fishies that we encountered while snorkeling in Ka’anapli!


In the evening we went to Lahaina for dinner.  We also experienced our very first gorgeous Maui Sunset.

Our first restaurant choice was super busy with an hour wait so we picked a restaurant a few doors down, Lahaina Fish Co. which turned out to be great.

The Ahi Tuna Sashimi was incredible.

And so was the Ahi Tuna Chops with Maui onion mashed potatoes…the chops part were sugar cane sticks. I thought the dishes that we selected were well prepared and I was very impressed with the professional service.

We left the house at 3am the following morning for what Mark Twain has called “the sublimest spectacle” he’d ever seen, Sunrise at Haleakala Crater, also known as House of the Sun.

We made it to the top of the crater at about 4:40am and it’s a good thing we got there a whole hour before the sunrise because otherwise we would have missed the amazing view and colors in the above picture.

As the time for sunrise approached more people showed up to see the sun rise at 10,00o feet.

It was incredibly cold up there, but worth every shiver.  It was amazing being above the clouds and see the sunrise and the ever dramatic change of colors.  It truly was an amazing experience.

After the sunrise we made our way down the crater and went to have breakfast at Market Fresh Bistro in Makawao.  I had Eggs Benedict with Mahi Mahi which was INCREDIBLE.   Our waitress was super friendly and attentive. Gosh it’s been a while since I have gotten this type of service in LA.

The next stop for us was Surfing Goat Dairy farm.  I have to tell you this was one of the funnest things I have ever done.  The staff, and I might add the goats, were very friendly and hospitable.

We were given a tour of the premises and also had the opportunity to feed the goats some hey.

So so so cute.  They were so incredibly gentle as they ate from your hand.

The bigger goats were cute, but the baby goats totally stole my heart.

This cute baby goat and I made friends and I just wanted to take him home with me. He was the friendliest of the bunch!

Just before the tour we were given a sample of some of the cheeses, and they were all incredibly good.  We bought a couple of types of cheeses, one of them being the feta cheese.  I would be lying to you if I said I had high expectations.  I had even less expectations when I saw that the feta cheese was packed in oil with a stem of rosemary.  After all I am Persian and feta cheese is what we eat a lot of.  For those of you who have been reading this blog for a while, you know that I am a huge fan of French Feta cheese as it is the mildest in terms of saltiness.  But my heart skipped a beat and my eyes may have rolled to the back of my head when I took the first bite into the small feta cube.  The initial taste was a light taste of olive oil with a very vague hint of rosemary, but THEN, then it was the most exquisite feta cheese I have EVER tasted in my whole entire life. It was simply divine, so good that I just have to have it on its own, no cracker or bread, so that I can stay in the moment without any other flavor monopolizing the feta itself.  They were not exaggerating when they said “The Feta Mo Betta!”

On our way back to our side of the island we went through fields after fields of sugar canes. It was so pretty and the swooshing sound of the leaves filled the air.

Another fun thing that we did was visiting the MauiGrown Coffee store.

You can do a coffee tasting of 5 different types of coffees grown here on the island.

Since the Maui Film Festival is taking place right now we also made a point to catch a couple of the screenings.  One of the movies that touched my heart and evoked a lot of thought, especially after having experienced the sunrise at Haleakala, was the documentary “Green” by Patrick Rouxel.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qfd0H9gmluo

I think everyone should see this documentary where no words are spoken — the images speak louder than any words.  To me it is a reminder of how our planet is paying a very high price for our own selfish comforts.  We should take better care of our plant and be more respectful to our nature and animals, and their natural habitat.

That’s it for this week! Stay tuned for more next week! For now, Aloha!

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