Fiji Comfort Food At Its Finest

At the time of writing this it had been raining for two weeks straight.  I don’t mean a drizzle here and there and some moody gray skies.  I’m talking sheet rain with fire hydrant force behind it and cyclonic winds followed by devastating flooding and power outages. This kind of weather, when I’m literally stuck indoors for days at a time, makes me want to eat, but not just anything, I want to eat carbs and sweets and lots of them.  I want comfort food, something warm and creamy.

I tried this traditional Fijian dessert at a cultural event when first arriving to the islands.  Vakasoso in Fijian means “something added”.  In other words, you take something in its raw state & add something to it, in this case coconut milk, making it infinitely more awesome.

Vakasoso is warm and rich, so call your spot on the couch in advance because this dessert will directly be followed by a nap.  Vudi, pronounced voon-dee, is in the banana family.  It’s not a banana, it’s not a plantain, but more like a combination of the two.  It has the fragrant aroma and flavor of a banana but has a higher starch content similar to a plantain.  If it just so happens that you are not living in the South Pacific then you could substitute bananas for this recipe.  However, if the bananas are too ripe they will just turn to mush, so make sure they are ripe but still a bit firm.

The Humble Ingredients. The tool on the left is an ancient war tool used, not's only a coconut scraper.

The ripe vudi may be a bit high in sugar, but its natural sugar.  Never the less, skip the extra sugar if you are conscious of your intake.  And DON’T worry for one second about your waistline….coconut milk is GOOD for you.  The naturally occurring fats in coconut oil PREVENT heart disease and the multi-chain triglycerides (MCT’s) are a long chain fatty acid and are one of the healthiest fats in existence.  So don’t waste one drop of that glorious milky sauce! Lick the bowl…….I did ; )

The Divine Decadence.


2 large ripe vundi, sliced into 1/4-1/2 inch thick rounds

1 cup coconut milk

3 tbsp shredded coconut

1 tbsp sugar (optional & most likely unnecessary)

Simmer covered over medium-low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Serve warm or at room temperature.


Contest! Name That Exotic Fiji Food!

Read the info below and check out the pictures of one of my favorite fruits in Fiji!  The first person to guess correctly gets a round trip flight to….oh, sorry not quite…but what you WILL get is a personalized post card from me from Fiji!

One rule though, if you are from Fiji or have lived in Fiji please DON’T GUESS!  Give our over-seas friends a chance.

A bowl of the tasty fruit......hmmm, what am I?

Here are your clues:

1.      Around the tropical world, these fruits are mostly eaten out-of-hand and can also be a dark purple in color.  They are a light yellow/green color when un-ripened and have a large pit in the center about the size of a nutmeg.

2.      The fruit is made into jam or jelly with lemon juice added, or more frequently preserved in combination with other fruits of more pronounced flavor. In Jamaica, the fruits are candied by stewing them in a sugar syrup with cinnamon.  In Fiji, people only eat them out of hand or make pickles out of the un-ripened fruit.   In Fiji they are not cultivated and grow in the wild.

3.      The season in Fiji just ended and runs from early December to mid January.

4.      Mild in flavor and sweetness with a silky smooth texture I fell in love at first bite.  This is one of the foods I will miss the most when I leave Fiji!

For size comparison....this fruit would not be eaten with eggs.