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Festival promotes benefits of embracing a vegan diet

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    Adam Tabura’s Kalo Crunch is on sale at Hawaiian Pie Co.

  • Sylvia Thompson will demonstrate how to make her raw zucchini fettuccine at VegFest Oahu on Saturday.


    Chef Adam Tabura.

Why go vegan? VegFest Oahu, a festival Saturday on the Frank Fasi Civic Grounds outside Honolulu Hale, will lay out the logic with speeches, cooking demonstrations and food sampling.

VegFest, from 1 to 6:30 p.m., celebrates the role of a meat-free diet in improving personal health as well as the environment.

“We want to show how a vegan diet is nutritious, tasty, easy to achieve and will minimize your environmental footprint,” Michael Wall, the festival’s director said in a statement.

Down to Earth, Peace Cafe, Juicy Brew, The Cut, Ke Nui Kitchen, India Cafe and Il Gelato are among vendors who will sell vegan items.

A selection of chefs will demonstrate how to make such foods yourself:

>> 1:30 p.m.: Sylvia Thompson Greens & Vines Restaurant, zucchini fettuccine with macadamia nut Alfredo and marinated mushrooms

>> 2:30 p.m.: Edgar Edge, food service director, Down to Earth Organic & Natural, seitan pepper steak

>> 3:30 p.m.: Kelly Stern, a raw food and vegan chef, Local Kine Luau Stew

>> 4:30 p.m.: Mama T. Gonsalves, of Mama T’s Ital Kitchen, chickpea mock tuna salad

Among the day’s speakers will be Keegan Kuhn, co-director of the documentary, “Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret,” who will speak on “The Link between Diet and Climate Change.”

A new cut of “Cowspiracy,” produced by Leonardo DiCaprio, is available for streaming on Netflix.

For a schedule of speeches and entertainment go to

Admission to the VegFest is free.

Luau meal to support palace

Friends of Iolani Palace celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the palace with a poi supper, 5:30 to 10 p.m. Saturday on the palace grounds.

Haili’s Hawaiian Food is catering a meal to include poke, poi, chicken long rice, kalua pig, lau lau, lomi salmon, sweet potato, pineapple and haupia.

The night will include entertainment and guided tours of the palace and a peek at the new basement galleries. Tickets are $150. Proceeds from the evening go to support Iolani Palace’s many programs. Go to

Poi, sweet potato and crunch

When Adam Tabura was in his first year of culinary school, the students were given an assignment to make a dish they’d grown up eating. Tabura decided on a sweet potato crunch cake that his grandparents made.

Years later that exercise has developed into a cake made with poi and sweet potato, with a crust of macadamia nuts and pecans, topped with coconut cream and more crunchy nuts. In a partnership with Hawaiian Pie Co. — they’re calling it a “square pie” — Tabura now has his creation, the Kalo Krunch, on the market.

It sells for $8.50 per 4-inch square (which can be cut into at least four portions) or $32 for a whole 8-inch “pie.” A half-sheet is available for $80 by pre-order.

Hawaiian Pie is at 508 Waiakamilo Road; call 988-7828. Closed Sundays and Mondays.

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