Aloha and Mele Kalikimaka
Mele Kalikimaka as I say when in Hawaii and Merry Christmas as I say when I’m on the mainland. I’m Rosie the Riveter sending you greetings, best wishes, and thanks from Hawaii. Now don’t be jealous! But I’m sitting at the base of a gently swaying palm tree, listening to the Common Myna chatter, and watching the long waves roll in toward the beach. It’s December, and I’ve been thinking about Pearl Harbor. How different the scene was 78 years ago on that terrible December 7, 1941 as smoke filled the air, ships sank, and thousands of lives were lost.
The surprise military strike against the US also inadvertently created what might be described as an even greater surprise. What is the surprise? It’s the millions of women who soon took up the battle on the homefront. They left their homes to:
- build ships and planes,
- fill jobs vacated by men in government offices,
- join the military branches as WAVES, WACs, SPARS, and WASPs,
- nurse wounded soldiers,
- volunteer with the Red Cross.
- planted Victory Gardens so that commercial agriculture could feed the troops,
- managed nutritious meals for their families on rationed food staples
- salvaged their tin cans and turned them in at the collection centers,
- saved cooking grease that the army used to produce explosives.
Our Homefront Activities
Meanwhile, we’re grateful that our 2019 homefront has been wonderful (and busy) at Rosie’s Legacy Gear—soon to be known as RosieCentral. Kendra, Matilda, and I expanded our product line, started selling on Amazon as well as Etsy, and developed new relationships with museums and other organizations. We have more products in the works and are eager to share news of them with you throughout 2020.
We’ve published a new Rosie’s CAN DO Cook Booklet and created a Fridge Magnet that faithfully recreates our Rosie Employment Badge Collar Pin in a shiny 3″ metal disk magnet (it’s so cool, if I do say so). We’re also have a forthcoming line of GET WELL Gifts to help your friends be strong and courageous as they heal and recover. I’m proud to be an icon of strength and empowerment to women battling illness and winning their personal wars.
Mele Kalikimaka and Mahalo
Most of all, during this special holiday season, Kendra, Matilda, and I want to thank you for your support this year. We appreciate your purchase of our products, your willingness to share my CAN DO ATTITUDE with others, and the strength and courage you express in your own life. Mahalo and thank you.
Since I’m in Hawaii right now, I decided my little gift to you would be a recipe for Haupia, a Hawaiian dessert that is quick and easy and a treat during the busy holiday season. Since working on my Rosie’s CAN DO Cook Booklet, I’ve been thinking about how the attack on Pearl Harbor also changed the lives of Hawaiians. What were they cooking on that “date which will live in infamy?” It was early morning, so most likely they were making breakfast. But I can imagine that some were fixing this simple Haupia to eat later in the day since it needs to chill for several hours.
We hope you find time to make this simple, but delicious recipe. And if you do, think about all that we owe to the millions of Rosie the Riveters who brought so much strength and courage to their work in order to help America win World War 2.
- 13.5 ounces coconut milk full fat
- 6 tbsp cornstarch
- 6 tbsp sugar
- ¾ cup water
- Mix cornstarch into cool water and stir until you have a cornstarch slurry. Add sugar and stir again.
- Pour cornstarch mixture into saucepan and add coconut milk. Whisk to combine over medium heat. Continue to whisk mixture for about 12 minutes. The mixture will be quite thick. You can stir and cook for up to 15 minutes, but it may become almost too thick, making it difficult to pour into the mold.
- Remove the pan from heat and pour Haupia into a prepared 8-inch square pan that has been lightly sprayed with oil or pour into individual molds. Let cool in the refrigerator for at least one hour up to overnight. Remove from refrigerator when the Haupia is cool and firm. If in a single pan, cut into small squares, remove, and serve one or two on a small plate. If in individual silicon molds, such as cubes, snowflakes, trees, or other shapes, push to release onto a dessert plate.
- Let cool in the refrigerator for at least one hour up to overnight. Remove from refrigerator when the Haupia is cool and firm. If in a single pan, cut into small squares, remove, and serve one or two on a small plate. If in individual silicon molds, such as cubes, snowflakes, trees, or other shapes, push to release onto a dessert plate.
- Traditionally, the Haupia is presented on a ti or banana leaf.
- Assuming you aren't in Hawaii, put squares or the individual molded piece on a dessert plate and decorate with fresh fruit such as blueberries or with lightly toasted grated coconut and/or macadamia nuts. For a Christmas dessert, consider using the pointed end of fresh strawberries to represent Santa’s hat—shown disappearing across the “snow.”
Hawaiian Haupia Pudding, Soft
- 13.5 ounces can coconut milk full fat
- 2 tbsp cornstarch
- 2 tbsp water
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 pinch coarse sea salt used in presentation
- Put the coconut milk and sugar into a sauce pan.
- Separately combine the cornstarch and water. Mix until cornstarch is completely dissolved in the water. Add to the coconut milk/sugar mixture.
- Whisk to combine cornstarch mixture with coconut and sugar mixture over medium heat. Continue to whisk the mixture for about 7 minutes, or until it is thick but can still be poured. The mixture begins to thicken by about the fourth or fifth minute. It will become thicker when refrigerated so do not overcook.
- Remove pan from heat and pour Haupia into individual cups or glasses, depending on how you want to serve the pudding. Chill in refrigerator for at least an hour or for as long as 12 hours, making this an easy fix-ahead dessert.
- Remove the Haupia pudding from the refrigerator about 10 minutes before serving. Dust the top with a pinch of large crystal sea salt. You can serve plain or decorate with fruit, flowers, toasted coconut flakes, roasted macadamia nuts, or other mild nuts such as cashews or pine nuts. If using fruit be sure it has been washed and well dried. Moisture on the Haupia will begin to spoil it.As with the traditional firm Haupia, you might consider using the pointed end of fresh strawberries to represent Santa’s red hat—shown disappearing across the “snow.”
Mele Kalikimaka and Mahalo,
Rosie the Riveter,
Matilda Butler, and