Living in Hawaii for four years gave me many unique culinary experiences that most do not get to have. There was a plethora of dinning options, one of which was Monkeypod Kitchen by Merriman in Ko Olina, Hawaii. It is an Asian / Island fusion restaurant that just happened to have the best Mai Tai I have ever had, including a whipped lilikoi (passionfruit) foam.
Monkeypod also has an array of craft beers, and many amazing dishes I would love to recreate. Some of my favorites are the raw ahi poke tacos, Monkeypod saimin, Korean pork bulgogi tacos, and Hamakua wild mushroom & truffles pizza:
I have recreated the Korean pork bulgogi tacos also, and plan to post that in the future! SO good!!
One of my favorites, though, is the Monkeypod Saimin. It is a rich smoked pork broth, filled with smoked pork, fresh noodles, broccoli, and green beans. It is topped with an array of fresh toppings: cilantro, sprouts, peanuts, red onions, and mint. I usually omit the mint, just personal preference. I also add a few items to spice it up a bit, including thin shaved jalapeño and chili garlic paste. Here is my method:
5 cups chicken stock (mine is homemade from the freezer, but feel free to use store bought stock)
3 cups smoked shredded pork (for my recipe, I am using left over kalua pork that I made this week. I par smoked a 3 lb pork butt simply seasoned with salt and pepper. I think cooked it in the Instant pot to make it moist and shreddable. You can use any smoked pork you would like – or just seasoned roasted pork)
2 cups broccoli florets
2 cups fresh green beans – trimmed and cut in half
½ tbs ground ginger
½ tbs granulated garlic
½ tbs ground black pepper
¼ cup soy sauce
½ tsp sesame oil
Noodle of preference – I’m using an Udon noodle found in the Asian section at Safeway
Red onion, sliced
Chili garlic paste
Thinly shaved jalapeño
To make the soup: Add chicken stock in large pot. Dump in pork, broccoli, green beans, granulated garlic, ground pepper, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Bring pot to a boil, only long enough to make the veggies bright green, heat the meat though, and infuse the stock with the pork. Turn off heat.
While waiting for the large pot to boil, cook noodles of choice per package instructions. Drain and cool with running water.
To prep toppings, chop cilantro, slice jalapeño and red onion. Scoop out some garlic chili paste and peanuts. Here is what my toppings plate looked like:
To assemble, place cooked noodles in the bottom of a bowl and ladle the pork and veggie broth on top.
Next, top with your toppings of choice, and enjoy!
This is a favorite copycat recipe.Try it, and tell me what you think!
Also – added tip! I usually smoke a big batch of pork butt at a time. I then vacuum seal and freeze it in smaller batches. That way, I can just dump the frozen stock and pork in at the same time for a quick and easy meal!