New Bedford and Hawaii Have Portuguese Malasadas in Common
My son Steven and his new bride Erica recently returned from their honeymoon in Hawaii. They spent two and a half weeks on Hawai'i – the "big island" – playing golf, snorkeling, hiking, exploring, drinking world-famous Hawaiian-grown coffee, and sampling the native fare.
They were disappointed, however, that their trip to paradise ended just before Mauna Loa began belching hot lava everywhere.
They had a great view of the volcano from the front porch of their resort.
In addition to all the native fruits, nuts, pork, and other local culinary specialties, there were surprises – tons of linguica and malasadas.
Portuguese emigration to Hawaii began in earnest in 1878.
Between 1878 and 1912, some 16,000 Portuguese immigrants migrated, mainly from Madeira and the Azores, to work on Hawaii's sugarcane plantations. Still more people of Portuguese ancestry poured in from Cape Verde, a province of Portugal.
With that many Azorean and Madeiran Portuguese, and Cape Verdeans settling on the Hawaiian Islands, it is hardly a coincidence that a culinary culture similar to that of the SouthCoast would emerge.
My son and daughter-in-law say malasadas and linguica are everywhere on Hawai'i. They say the malasadas are like what they find here at home, but the linguica is milder and less spicy. The linguica is made locally in Hawaii by such companies as Frank's Foods, Gouvea's, Redondo's, and Purity.
New Bedford is 2,392 miles from the Azores and Hawai'i is about 7,291 miles away from them. Fishing and whaling are common thread that runs between all three cultures.
By the way, New Bedford is only 5,044 miles from Hawai'i.