It’s Great to Hate Spam®
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When I was a kid, the best thing we did with Spam® was grate it like cabbage, added mayo, chopped green peppers, a little onion,spam spread it on bread and called it a ham salad sandwich. Spam® is simply processed and cooked pork shoulder and ham preserved in a can. The oft’ termed mystery meat gets its name from a shortened, “spiced ham.”

But, why do the people of such exotic islands as the Hawaiian Island actually tend to love Spam®? Because the GI’s during WWII ate a lot of Spam® in the Pacific theatre, it stands to reason the locals got to share some. As obtaining meat was difficult in that part of the world and the canned meat needed no refrigeration, Spam® became a prized  commodity throughout all the Pacific islands and is to this day.

We learned Spam® in the Pacific islands is a childhood memory thing, probably a comfort food thing, kind of like our mac n’ cheese. They have learned how to incorporate it into any meal, and it moved readily into the kitchens of the vast numbers of ethnicities on all the Pacific islands. Its popularity, it seems, tends not to wane.

Let’s look at our child treasure, mac n’ cheese and see how we have manipulated it:

Beer cheese
Buffalo
Chicken
Chilli
Crawdads
Four cheese
Gouda and bacon
Green chilli
Indian
Lobster
Mexican
Pizza style
Puff pastry
Sausage and onion
Shrimp

How have islanders adapted their Spam®, and we are told there are Spam® snob there too.

We found a book on Amazon.com entitled:  Hawaii Cooks with Spam®: Local Recipes Featuring Our Favorite Canned Meat, by Muriel Miura.

“In this beautifully illustrated book, you’ll find scrumptious dishes for any occasion; from tailgate parties to dinner parties, from picnics to luau,” she claims. Whole sections of the book are devoted to recipies preferred by different Pacific nationalities. Here’s a few just from the Hawaiian favorites:

Spam® Musubi
Spam® Loco Moco
Spam® Omelet
Spam® Potato Salad
Broiled Spam® Nigiri
Crispy Spam® Won Ton
Spam® Saimin Salad
Spam® Teriyaki

Now, the Hormel Foods Corporation offers Spam® in several varieties:

Spam® Classic
Spam® Hot & Spicy
Spam® Jalapeño
Spam® Less Sodium
Spam® Lite
Spam® Oven Roasted Turkey
Spam® Hickory Smoke flavor
Spam® Spread
Spam® with Bacon
Spam® with Cheese

Following are two sites with Spam® recipes:

http://www.Spam.com/recipes

http://www.pitt.edu/~blair1/new-Spam-recipes.html

About Marty Martindale

Foodsite Magazine and Marty aim to help the cooking-challenged avoid dependence on others due to lack of cooking knowhow. We concentrate on quick breakfasts, portable lunches and “good-4-u” night meals. With readily available web translation, the magazine explains separate foods, a little of their history, their nutrition, suggested “go-withs,” serving ideas and links to foodsites with recipes.

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