Island holiday meals demand their own traditions. We are, after all, the melting pot of all things culinary, so why not substitute local flavors on our Thanksgiving plates?

At Michel’s at the Colony Surf, German-born executive chef Hardy Kintscher has spent the past two decades living with Hawaii ingredients. And he’s always looking for ways to incorporate classic European techniques with Island flair. Fabulously festive and fairly simple to prepare, Hardy’s Island version of the Italian classic, Osso Bucco, uses pork shank instead of veal and a guava sauce that’s perfect as a glaze, marinade or dressing.

Looking to dress up your holiday table with something inspiring? At Michel’s they serve this with a side of seafood saffron risotto, but it’s equally delicious with mashed potatoes or a simple salad.

Go guava! Cranberry sauce is so last season.

Guava BBQ Kurobuta Pork Shank

Ingredients

* 4 pork shanks, 16-20 ounces each
* 2 sprigs fresh thyme
* 2 carrots
* 2 stalks celery
* 1 small onion, peeled and quartered
* 1 tablespoon crushed juniper berries
* 1/2 tablespoon crushed cloves
* 1/2 tablespoon cracked black pepper
* 1 tablespoon salt, to taste

Wash fresh pork shanks with cold water and place in a large pot with enough cold water to cover the shanks.

Bring to a slow simmer and leave for about 45 minutes.

Add vegetables and salt if required.

Continue to cook until meat is soft and falling off the bone (about 2 1/2 hours).

Carefully remove the shank and let cool.

Remove any excess fat, and marinate meat in guava sauce.

Bake the pork shank for 25-30 minutes at 350 degrees before serving

Guava BBQ Sauce

Ingredients

* 1 quart fresh guava puree, reduced on low heat by half
* 3 cups chili sauce
* 5 tablespoons brown sugar
* 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
* 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
* 1 tablespoon liquid smoke
* salt, to taste

Reduce the guava puree by half and leave to cool. Add all remaining ingredients and adjust the seasoning to your liking.

Chef’s Tip

Buy quality-brand pork or turkey gravy mix (usually comes in 4-ounce packages); instead of using water, substitute the braising liquid from the pork. It will enhance the flavor tremendously.

Pour gravy over cooked meat, or serve hot on the side.

Try serving with a nice salad for lunch, or create a gourmet meal by adding a seafood saffron risotto for dinner.