HONOLULU Staff Picks Hawaiʻi Favorites: ʻUlu Chips and Hummus
As we highlight local products you can buy online, in grocery stores or straight from the producer, we spotlight ʻUlu Mana.
photo: christi young
I’ve never been a sweets person. But when it comes to chips, I can down a whole bag by myself. Not that I have. Or not that I will admit. I first discovered ʻUlu Mana when I picked up a container of ʻulu hummus at a farmers market and my husband and I battled for the last scoop of the spicy Hoppin’ Jalapeño flavor. But when I found Loren Shoop’s bags of crisp ʻulu, I was hooked. Kona-native Shoop started his business a few years ago, turning ʻulu from the Hawaiʻi ʻUlu Producers Cooperative on the Big Island into smooth hummus. The chip came a little later and is exactly what I’m looking for in my favorite snack: delicate slices that are still cut thick enough to deliver a satisfying crunch, finger-licking saltiness and fried perfectly so I can plow through a pile of chips without drowning myself in a pool of regret and grease at the end.
ʻUlu Mana uses coconut oil—you can taste just a hint of the sweetness—for all three chip flavors. My favorite is the garlic sea salt, which gets a boost from garlic and onion powder. Stir your jalapeño, turmeric, sweet potato or beet ʻulu hummus—my daughter’s favorite—before dipping to avoid leaving Stonehenge-like shards of broken chips behind. And don’t bother getting just one bag or container. Believe me, it won’t be enough.
$7.99 for chips, $7.49 for hummus. Available at various grocery stores and online at ulumanahawaii.com. Shop for it and other local snacks including Nosh, Kihene tea, Hawaiian Chip Company, local honey and more at hawaiianfarmersmarket.com.