I had a long list of things I wanted to post today.  White Chunk Macadamia Nut Cookies, Hawaiian Style Short Ribs, Huli Huli Chicken, Coconut Ice Cream…Can you tell where my mind is? I’ll help you out; it’s right here:

That was the sunrise this morning. I’m playing hookie (like, from life- seriously you should all try it) this week and spending some time relaxing and playing with my husband and two of our best friends in one of our favorite places.

Seeing beautiful things everywhere

And we’re eating lots and lots of food, like one should on vacation.  I loved this dragon fruit.

This was seriously one of the best pizzas I’ve ever had.  Thin crust whole wheat crust, macadamia nut basil pesto, kalua pork, fresh pineapple and Hawaiian bbq sauce drizzle.  I totally have to recreate this one (and this one from last year; still haven’t done that!).  First I need a giant outdoor pit and a whole pig.  We’ll work on that.

In honor of Halloween, I must post this picture from under the candy corn tree.  Didn’t you all know candy corn grew on trees??  I’m sure someone can tell me what this actually is, but when I saw it I immediately yelled “Candy Corn!”

Now, as you can see I didn’t get around to making any of my good tropical ideas. I was too busy getting my life organized enough for me to forget about it all for a week (Why does it always take so much more time to prepare to leave, than to actually leave?)  So instead I’m giving you a quick and easy fall-ish dessert that I already had photographed and written up a few weeks ago. But I’m guessing no one will argue with that, right??



Enjoy that, and thanks in advance for being patient this week while both Kate and I are traveling.  We’ll be slow to answer emails and comments, but we’ll get to them as soon as we can.  And we’ll announce giveaway winners when we’re back as well, so make sure you enter the ones going on at The Scoop right now!



  1. 1
    Kimberli says:

    I would LOVE more Hawaiian recipes! I moved to Hawaii a little over a year ago and have tried to copy all those yummy flavors without a ton of luck. So, please, share the secrets! 🙂 I did make a guava cheesecake that turned out really good though. And I used your fruit leather post (thank you!) to make guava fruit rolls. Delicious! You can’t beat all the fresh fruit here!

  2. 2

    Great pictures! The views are spectacular! Perfect for your recipe. This looks tasty and sweet perfect for my sweet tooth. I can’t wait to whip up my own batch of these.

  3. 3

    Hummm deve ser tão bom…adorei…bjs

  4. 4
    Kui says:

    Those look so yummy! and I don’t even like pumpkin! but I’d probably inhale it anyway… Btw, those (the giant candy corn) kind of look like pieces of hala fruit, but I can’t tell the scale of the picture.

  5. 5

    Oh my! This sounds awesome!

  6. 6

    What a perfect little dessert. All your photos are so beautiful, it looks like an amazing trip.

  7. 7
    Kelly Jo says:

    Kauai is the best place on earth! I think we took that exact same picture (second one down) on our honeymoon – I swear we were standing in the same place! I love that place so much and can’t wait to go back! I’d love some Hawaiian inspired recipes, especially with the dreary weather coming up! Just no Spam please!

  8. 8
    Jen says:

    This looks AMAZING! Will definitely be trying it. And I want to just through my screen to eat that pizza.

  9. 9
    Dara says:

    WOW. Everything in this post looks amazing. Well done.

  10. 10
    Shannon says:

    Seriously? Oh. My. Goodness. I can’t wait to make these little treats. They look so delicious. Thanks for the fun recipe!

  11. 11
    Patti says:

    You have no idea how much comfort it brings me to finally know that candy corn comes from a tree in Hawaii. I can rest easy from now on. Have a blast while you are there- cold Boise is waiting for you.

  12. 12
    Kenzie says:

    Ahhhh, our very favorite vacation! You have to hike down to Queen’s Bath. So much fun!
    Please try and come up with a recipe for that pizza, looks yum! Also, eat at Puka Dog. 🙂

  13. 13
    Tracy Lawson says:

    Oh, these look devine!!! My family will completely have a fit over these. Thanks for the post and happy vacation.

  14. 14
    Kim Brown says:

    Homesick for Hawaii!! Your candy corn is from a lauhala (hala) tree 🙂

  15. 15
    Angie says:

    I don’t know where you are staying but on Sunday, go to the Kapa’a ward. It’s the best!!! (Okay, the whole stake/island is awesome, but I have a special love for the people in Kapa’a.)

  16. 16
    miki says:

    i’m from hawaii but i now live in dc and your beautiful pictures make me miss home so much. i hope you’re having a great time. aloha and mahalo!

  17. 17
    Jessica says:

    These look FABULOUS, except that I’m not a fan of ginger snaps. Are these cookies essentially the same thing? I tried to click on the link in your post to take me to the cookie recipe so I could check it out, but it said that page cannot be found. When you have a moment on that fabulous vacation, could you help a girl out? I was thinking Egg Nog ice cream would be awesome, but I’ll always choose egg nog over pumpkin!

    • 17.1
      sara says:

      They are ginger flavored, but not crispy like gingersnaps; they’re soft and chewy. But if it’s the flavor you don’t like, then this one probably isn’t for you!

  18. 18
    Leesa says:

    Drool, drool, drool!! Also love the “candy corn tree!” This is my most-favoritest blog ever. 🙂

  19. 19
    heather says:

    i’m in hawaii right now too 🙂 can’t wait to see your recipe for huli huli chicken!

  20. 20

    I adore Kauai! Been there twice and absolutely love it 🙂 Enjoy!!!
    Oh, and these pumpkin-ginger pizookies? A-mazing!

  21. 21
    Stefanie says:

    Jealous! I’d love to be in Hawai’i right now, although San Diego isn’t too bad either. 😉 The pizookies sound delicious and that pizza sounds like the best Hawaiian pizza ever (forget Canadian bacon and pineapple!). Those look like pieces of hala fruit, but also totally like giant candy corn, great picture! Oh, and you can make kaula pig in a crockpot.

  22. 22
    Allison Brenn says:

    You know that you can totally make Kalua Pork in a crockpot or roasting pan in the oven right??! Just get a fatty pork roast, rub it with lots of kosher salt, pour half to a full bottle of liquid smoke over it all (depending on the size of your roasts…. we make almost 15 lbs at a time and freeze it or use it in freezer meal burritos) and 1-2 cups of water over that. cover your roasting pan with tightly stretched foil to hold the steam in, put the lid on tight, and cook it in the oven on low (like 275) for 6 or more hours hours. Don’t peek at it…. it will be incredibly moist, flavorful, and take you right back to vacation! Serve with white rice, pineapple, and whatever else you can think of!

  23. 23
    celia says:

    oh my goodness – these sound YUMMY!! I will definitely be making these.

  24. 24
    Melissa says:

    Just got back from Kauai 2 weeks ago – we stay in Waimea, but always make it a point to go to the Kalaheo Cafe and Coffee Co. while we’re there – the breakfasts are amazing (their sticky buns may just rival yours…), so good! My youngest daughter loves pizookies – can’t wait to try this one!

  25. 25
    Chelsea says:

    Looks delish! We’re having a gingerfest soon and this looks like it might need to be one of our dishes.
    Also, I’m headed to Kauai in a couple weeks and would love to hit where you got your pizza. Are you willing to spill your dining secrets?

  26. 26
    Nicole Peck says:

    Never been to Kauai, but I loved visiting the other islands (Oahu and the Big Island). I keep hearing how I must go to Kauai, so some day I hope to!!! Your Hawaiian foods sound divine!! You must create them and them so then I can create them and eat them!! Love the candy corns. I totally thought they were. LOL And now I must try to make that pizookie – wowzers!!!!

  27. 27
    Angela says:

    These look delicious.

  28. 28
    Cassi says:

    What a coincidence, my husband and I just got back from Kauai last week. LOVE IT!!

  29. 29
    Nichole Darting says:

    Can you bake this in a 9×13 dish for a party?

    • 29.1

      I think this one is really best made in small containers, but if you wanted to do it for a party you could just make the cookie dough into actual cookies and serve it in a bowl that way with the rest of the ingredients. You’d still get the awesome flavor combo!

  30. 30
    Angie says:

    You’re killing me! I was just there two weeks ago (our 5th trip there – we are so blessed!), and want to go back! We got 8 inches of snow today here in Colorado. *sigh* Kauai is my favorite place in the world.

    I thought the same about that candy corn tree! How fun! Enjoy your trip!

  31. 31
    Elizabeth W says:

    I LIVE on Kaua’i. Yes, I know you’re jealous.

  32. 32
    MIlt says:

    You don’t need a pit for the Kalua Pork,just do it this way.

  33. 33
    jan says:

    were going to Kauai in a few weeks… wondering where exactly you had that amazing pizza? Any other food recommendations?

  34. 34
    donna says:

    gorgeous photos and everything looks delicious … but what are you trying to do to us – fatten us up or what???

  35. 35
    Carrie P. says:

    such a beautiful place to visit.
    I did not know candy corn grew on trees. lol Too bad money doesn’t.
    Oh, that recipe looks tasty.
    I bought your cook book when I was in Salt Lake City this past May. I made the Pumpkin Pie Milkshake last night. Delicious! My husband loves it.

  36. 36
    Angie A says:

    Sounds like you’ve been there a bunch before, but if you haven’t taken a helicopter tour, you should. My husband’s company, Inter-Island Helicopters (Interislandhelicopters.com) is in Port Allen, which isn’t terribly far from Kaleheo (love that ward BTW) and they do an amazing tour!! I’m jealous you’re there, and I’m not!! And, I’ll have to try this recipe out, love fall inspired treats!! Have so much fun!!

    • 36.1

      We have in fact done the heli-tour on one of our previous trips. I agree it’s the absolute best way to see the island! I almost didn’t go (was going to just let my hubby and our boys go- I don’t love small flying things, haha) but went at the last minute and was SO glad I did!

  37. 37
    Bonnie T says:

    These look so good! Do you think they could be made in a muffin tin? Just twelve little cups? I know, I need to just get some ramekins, but I can’t right now.
    Enjoy your well-deserved, much-needed (I’m sure) vacation!

    • 37.1

      You know, you probably could Bonnie- but you’d want to use pretty sturdy ones. Check out the foil aisle in your grocery store and look for the reynolds ones with the pretty patterns on it. By far the thickest, sturdiest liners I’ve ever used.

  38. 38
    ellen callo says:

    Aloha nui loa, Sara. I’m glad to hear you loved Kauai. But you must return to Hawaii and spend each vacation on different islands. Each island has its own personality. I see that you have your question answered on Hawaii’s “candy corn” and make kalua pig without a pit.

    Love your recipes!

  39. 39
    meredith says:

    I LoVe that place!! I even love reading about it and seeing your pictures. Just like the other comments … LOVE to know your favorite restaurants on the island, SO-seriously!! And I also vote for a full week (or two) of Hawaiian recipe postings after you get back! Enjoy your trip 🙂

    Looks like it’s time to pick up a carton of the pumpkin ice cream … even easier than the cookies!

  40. 40
    Christy says:

    I make the cookies using butter and they didn’t spread. Definitely chill the dough which is key and keeping the butter cold when creaming. Shortening scares me! I’ve substituted buckwheat honey in place of molasses before with no problem. Can’t really taste difference between the two. Awesome recipe!

  41. 41
    sue says:

    those look great!

  42. 42
    Schuyler says:

    This post made me want Hawaiian food badly! Please recreate the coconut turnovers! As far as the pizza goes, I got an issue of Cook’s Country in the mail and in proper Cook’s Country fashion they tried to perfectly recreate Kalua Pork: http://www.cookscountry.com/recipes/Hawaiian-Style-Smoked-Pork-Kalua-Pork-/30887/?extcode=M00KSCR00. It looks really delicious and would be even more delicious on the pizza you posted 😉

    • 42.1

      ooh, thank you! I’m excited to see that it’s similar to how I do it, but I never thought about using the green tea or brown sugar. I’m going to check that out- thanks for linking!

  43. 43

    Imagine my delight as I got off my airplane in Kauai a few minutes ago and while waiting for my luggage I checked your website and lo and behold you’re here too! It made me smile. Now you have to tell me where that delicious pizza is so I can eat it while I’m here!! And then you’ll need to recreate the recipe for me of course 🙂

  44. 44
    garysgirl says:

    Wow! Your pictures are AMAZING!!! Looks like a fantastic place to vacation to! Glad you’re relaxing and having fun! 🙂 This recipe looks great! I love the other pizookies, and I think new twists on classics are a great idea. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  45. 45
    Hannah says:

    wow. There is no way that can be anything but amazing.

    Enjoy your vacation!

  46. 46
    Joni says:

    DEFINITELY making these for Thanksgiving dessert! I don’t really like pumpkin pie but I do love pumpkin in just about everything else – and these cookie, ice cream, caramel, candied nut beauties include just about everything else! Just throw a new pair of shoes in there and I won’t be able to stand the excitement! 🙂

  47. 47
    Lauren says:

    Love Hawaii! Here’s an easy Kalua Pig recipe for the crock-pot: sprinkle a pork roast (around 3 lbs) with a heaping tablespoon of coarse sea salt and a tablespoon or so of Liquid Smoke. Cook in crockpot (no water needed) for about 8-10 hours on low, shred meat and return to juices. We serve this with coconut rice and fresh pineapple for a taste of Hawaii at home! Love your blog and cookbook!

  48. 48
  49. 49
    Jenny says:

    I wonder if after these are baked, if you could pop a canning jar lid on them and let them seal themselves! Then when you want to have them for dessert, take off the lid, heat in oven and put on the toppings. Do you think it would work?

  50. 50
    Polly says:

    Grew up in Hawaii and have amazing recipes!! They are my all time favorites :o)

  51. 51
  52. 52
  53. 53
    Claire says:

    OMG this looks so bad, but so so good! I wish we had the pumpkin flavoured foods here in Australia, like you do. I would love to try Pumpkin ice cream.

  54. 54
    Michelle says:

    I made these for a party and they were a huge hit. I even forgot the pecans! I would recommend filling ramekin 1/3 full as some of my guests left half or more of the cookie uneaten. Not becuase it wasn’t delish but because there was a lot of cookie in ratio to ice cream. In Utah, Farr makes a pumpkin ice cream in a large container and it was quite good.

  55. 55
    Leigh Anne says:

    I HEART Kauai! By far my fav vaca destination! I know you had a great time 🙂 Ahhhh…..I wanna go right now!

  56. 56
    Joanna says:

    This is evilly good.

  57. 57
    Tabeja says:

    Im going to Kauai in 39 days!!! Where was that pizza from??

  58. 58
    Patti says:

    My husband’s family was in town last night and after feeding them your chicken cordon bleu for dinner we had these bad boys for dessert. Heavenly!!!!! They were SO good! I looked for pumpkin ice cream at the store. They didn’t have any so I made your homemade recipe. I just forgot to put the nuts on top. Oh well…they were still so incredible! Thanks!

  59. 59
    Naomi D. says:

    Just made these and my husband says, “This tastes like Christmas!” What a delicious variation of the pizookies we love!

  60. 60
    Cheryl Totten says:

    Just wanted to say thanks for the receipe. I’m making this for dessert. Almost didn’t have the ice cream because my husband found it last night. Thanks again.

  61. 61
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