Recipe courtesy of Mark Noguchi and Frolic Hawaii


  • 2 lbs luau leaves, stems removed and stemless leaves coarsely chopped
  • 2 lbs Farms pork shoulder, cut in 1 1/2″ to 2″ cubes
  • 1 lb yellow onion, sliced thin with the grain
  • Finger-size knob of fresh ginger, smashed
  • 1 Hawaiian chili pepper, minced (optional)
  • 1 pint water
  • Salt, to taste
  • Black pepper and soy, to taste 


  1. Set a large, heavy-bottomed pot on the stove and get it ripping hot. Meanwhile, toss the diced pork in a bowl with about 1 Tbsp of salt.
  2. Add just enough oil to the pot to lightly coat the bottom. When the oil is hot enough to shimmer and give off wisps of steam, add the pork in small batches to avoid overcrowding and brown well. Remove cooked pork, add next batch and continue until all pork is browned.
  3. Pour out most of the rendered pork fat from the pot, leaving just enough to coat the bottom. Add onions and ginger, lower heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are sweet and translucent.
  4. Now layer in luau leaves on top of onion. Add browned pork on top of the luau leaves to weigh them down, add water, cover. Bring heat down to medium low, then very low, and simmer until pork is cooked through. Those sensitive to itching from luau leaves will want to keep it on simmer for 2-3 hours, depending on type of luau leaf.
  5. Finish seasoning with salt, pepper, soy sauce. Add more water if you like your stew thinner. Serve with rice. Makes 4 medium or 3 large servings.
  6. Pairing recommendation: beer