Fall Letter

Posted on October 01, 2019 by Aletha Thomas | 0 Comments

Aloha MPJ Friends and Family,
Just this week we are finally feeling the days cool down a tad. Just a tad, but after this past season's heat, it is a much-appreciated reprieve! Kauai's summer produce was beyond bountiful, gifting us a freezer-full of West-Side Rapoza Mangoes and North Shore Sugarloaf Pineapples. Wild Guava from Lawai's pastureland is just starting to show face on our loading dock, a few 5-gallon buckets at a time. Needless to say, we are ready for holiday orders. If only our jars would arrive!

If you haven't been to the Jam Shop for Saturday Brunch, please do! It is becoming quite popular with our locals looking for something new. Each Saturday we offer a special Brunch Menu in addition to our regular offerings. I believe this Saturday we will be featuring Oxtail Soup, Biscuits and Gravy with Scrambled Eggs and Hashbrowns, and a Vegetarian Bagel Breakfast Sandwich. Come on in between 7 - 1 pm for a velvety cup of coffee and a relaxing breakfast. (If you mention you read our newsletter, we will take 10% off your entree item this Saturday only).
Kauai chefs have been reaching out, requesting to guest teach a workshop in the Jam Kitchen. We are thrilled to share the Fall lin-up with you and hope you are able to attend an evening workshop or two. Chef Beatrice will be teaching a Donut + Malasada workshop as well as a Holiday Pie Class. She has become a valued regular in the Jam Kitchen, sharing her skills and tricks for mastering seemingly difficult culinary feats. Chef Clinton will also be returning to our kitchen in October to teach his favorite Fall Soups. He has a way of taking familiar recipes and elevating them with little twits and unexpected surprises. Lastly, Chef Bobby, from Uncle Bobby's Food Truck located at Lawai's Warehouse 3540 will be presenting Street Tacos. His food truck specializes in California style Mexican Food. This is Bobby's first workshop in the Jam Kitchen and we look forward to learning how to make tortillas, pickles, and proteins for the perfect neighborhood Taco Party!

Our Monthly Prix Fixe Dinner will take place on Tuesday, October 29th, featuring Chef Noah Blair of Honolulu's Pint and Jigger and Square Barrels. We will be posting his menu in the next few days and look forward to enjoying a whimsical, culinary experience. Remember to bring your favorite bottle of wine to enjoy with your meal!

I am looking forward to hosting our first Keiki culinary event on Sunday, October 27th. We will learn how to make and decorate Fall Cookies. This workshop is open to 2nd - 5th graders. Attendees will decorate cookies celebrating Fall and making cookie dough to take home for later bake-offs.

Monkeypod Jam is partnering with the 2019 Poipu Food and Wine Festival. We are hosting an Ulu Pickling workshop on Thursday, November 7th from 10-11 am. This is your chance to learn how we make our lovely marinated ulu that tastes so similar to artichoke hearts. 

Don't forget to register for our 3rd annual Cookie Swap! It is becoming quite popular and will be on Monday, December 16th. 

More events will certainly be added as the holiday's approach, so keep your eyes peeled for our newsletters. We are are always open to suggestions, and look forward to hearing what you would like to learn or celebrate at the Jam Shop.

Please know how thankful we are for each of you. We love visiting with you in the shop and at the farmers markets. Together, we are helping to make agriculture here on Kauai more sustainable while preserving the bounty of produce grown by our farmers. As Mother Earth takes a little break from creating, take a moment to reflect on all that is good in your life, your family and your community. Blessings and comfort to you all!



Posted in Brunch, Classes, Dinner, Poipu Food and Wine, Workshops

Summer 2019 Letter

Posted on July 03, 2019 by Aletha Thomas | 0 Comments

Summer is in full swing at the Jam Kitchen! Between avalanches of fruit being delivered, new bistro menus and our not-to-be-missed workshops, we've got our hands full. Thank you for being a part of our journey!

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Posted in 2019, Bistro, Chef Joe Fox, Date Night, Made in Hawaii, Mango, Menu, Salsa Verde, Sugarloaf Pineapple, Workshops

Date Night at Monkeypod Jam

Posted on September 24, 2018 by Aletha Thomas | 0 Comments


A Letter from MPJ Founder, Aletha Thomas

Aloha Kauai Ohana, 
This adorable couple is my parents. The photo was taken at Christmas Break, 1973, just a few months after they met and had an adventurous, summer fling. That fling grew into a love that has continued through 44 years of marriage, four daughters, and four states. That’s a lot of 4’s!
One of the most vivid memories I have of my parents is Date Night. The household finances could be lean or fat; either way a sitter would be hired so mom and dad could dress up and head out for a night on the town. Date Night usually involved a progressive dinner of appetizers at a quaint café, an entrée at another, followed by dessert and coffee at a favorite jazz club. I believe Date Night is part of the reason my parents are still together after so many years. Each week, they committed a few hours to reconnect as friends and partners in life’s journey. Hopefully there was a dash of romance as well, but as a mother and wife, I know romance isn’t always at the forefront. Sometimes what a relationship needs is a quiet meal under soft lights, the opportunity to talk or not talk, and the knee of your best friend touching yours while you share a dessert.
Now, I have no intention of leaving out my friends who are not waist deep in laundry, keiki dance classes and PTSA meetings. I understand the immense value of going out with my close friends. It's a precious luxury catching up over a meal that doesn't feel rushed because of deadlines or phone emails. Sitting face to face with the people who are crucial to our sanity is so very important. At times, laughing about a crazy experience that happened earlier in the week or sharing a heavy burden with a dear friend over a velvety bowl of soup is just what we need.
From the moment I first turned on the mason jar lights at Monkeypod Jam, I knew we had to host a time for adults to sit down to a simple meal and enjoy relaxed conversation. Our first dinner will launch with the help of my sister, Heidi. She will be visiting from Portland and is an incredible home cook and hostess. Heidi and I have created a menu that pays tribute to our parents, the time they spend together, and the food they enjoy. We encourage you to bring a bottle of your favorite wine and let us take care of the rest.



Italian Date Night at Monkeypod Jam
Date: Friday, October 12th, 2018
Time: 5pm to 9pm

Ribollita Soup (v)
Tuscan Kale Salad (v)

Beef Shank Ragout Over Creamy Polenta with Roasted Kauai Vegetables
Roasted Kauai Vegetable Lasagna (v)

Dad's Panna Cotta Topped with White Pineapple Ginger Jam
Mom's Canadian Butter Tart with Vanilla Ice Cream

Walla Walla Roastery Coffee

Please bring your favorite wine!
$10 Corkage Fee

 $45 Per Guest 
(Not Including GET or Gratuity) 

Posted in 2018, Date Night, Founders Blog