Washington State Chef's

Member Spotlight

Member Spotlight - September 2021

Kahale Ahina

Favorite Quote

“Happiness is directly related to how much struggle you have undertaken to achieve that happiness.”


Chef Ahina is a Bonney Lake High School Culinary Arts Instructor and on the Board of Directors for the Washington Hospitality Association Education Foundation. Chef Kahale Ahina was also named Chef of the Year for 2021 by the Washington State Chef’s Association.

Chef Ahina is married and a father of two young men (all of whom are in the foodservice industry). His passion of cooking and sharing his culinary expertise with others employs him at Bonney Lake High School for the past 16 years. He not only teaches culinary skills but also involves students in competitions, catering events, and a multitude of industry experiences. When not in the kitchen, you can find chef adventuring in his camping trailer and on the water as an avid water sports enthusiast. Chef especially enjoys grilling, sautéing and cooking hot in his backyard wood-fired pizza oven and smoker. His top family favorite dish is Pork Vietnamese Spring Rolls. View the recipe below…

Favorite Recipe

Pork Vietnamese Spring Rolls

Vietnamese Dipping Sauce

  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 small dried red chili (crushed OK)
  • 4 T Sugar
  • 4 T Fresh Lime Juice
  • 1/2 C rice vinegar
  • 1/2 C water
  • 4 T carrot, grated
  • 1/4 C fish sauce

Combine ingredients and store in a jar in the refrigerator. Use this dipping sauce to dip spring rolls, egg rolls, and to make pork marinade. I usually make this recipe X4.

Peanut Sauce

  • 1 C peanut butter
  • 1/2 C pineapple juice
  • 1/4 C hoisin sauce

Heat on the stovetop to combine.

Vietnamese Pork Marinade

  • 1 C vietnamese dipping sauce
  • 1 C shoyu (soy sauce)
  • 1 tsp chinese five spice, powdered
  • 1 stalk lemon grass (smashed and cut into chunks so you can pick it out later) or 1 T dried and powdered lemon grass
  • 1.5 – 2 Lb. pork, thinly sliced any cut will do, the more fat content the better for flavor (hint: to slice thinly, thaw or freeze meat half way then slice)

Combine ingredients and let marinade for 24 hrs. Skewer and grill. If you do not have time, spread pork on a cookie sheet and broil or grill on a broiling pan.

Other ingredients for Vietnamese Spring Rolls

  • Spring Roll Skins (wraps, the ones with the red rose label are the strongest and will not break)
  • Rice Flour Stick (noodles)
  • Leaf lettuce
  • Bean sprouts
  • Cucumber, julienne
  • green onion, sliced
  • Grated carrot (can be added to your dipping sauce)
  • Fresh Herbs (Thai basil-purple stem, mint, cilantro)
  • Sriracha Hot Sauce
  • Hoisin Sauce

Roll your ingredients in a moistened wrap and enjoy with the sauces.