View all posts filed under 'Asian Recipes'

A Salad from Hiroko Shimbo To Start the New Year Off Right

Tuesday, 1. January 2013 5:26

A kale-tofu salad that you will sing the praises for all new year long.

At the top of your New Year’s resolution list are the vows to eat more kale and more tofu, right?

They should be.

Especially when they’re combined in this healthful salad that tastes so delicious that you’ll forget it’s even good for you.

“Kale in Peanut Butter-Tofu Sauce” is so satisfying that even my husband Meat Boy inhaled it even though there are no meat products in it.

The recipe is from “Hiroko’s American Kitchen” (Andrews McMeel), of which I recently received a review copy. The book is by Hiroko Shimbo, an authority on Japanese cuisine who is also a trained sushi chef.

It features 125 straightforward recipes that make cooking Japanese food at home much simpler with Shimbo’s tips and substitutions when you can’t find certain ingredients at your local market. Don’t have dashi? Use low-sodium chicken stock instead. No Japanese curry powder in your pantry? Reach for Madras curry powder instead. Don’t want to make kelp stock? Plain water will do in a pinch.

This particular dish tastes like one of those pricey prepared salads you’d find at Whole Foods.

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Holiday Green Beans with An Asian Twist

Tuesday, 18. December 2012 5:26

Green beans with brown butter, Asian fish sauce, crushed peanuts and celery leaves.

When guests sit down to the holiday spread, they may squeal with delight over the sight of crisp potato cakes, warm homemade rolls and creamy, cheesy cauliflower gratin.

But secretly, they’re glad you put out some green beans, too.

Because for all the over-the-top indulgences we can’t get enough of at this time of year, we also crave just a little respite with something fresh, crisp and green.

“Green Beans in Brown Butter and Ginger Fish Sauce” fits that bill.

The recipe comes from the Wall Street Journal and it was created by Chef Edward Lee of 610 Magnolia in Louisville, KY. You may remember him as a competitor in last season’s “Top Chef” competition.

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Ming Tsai’s Miso Pork Stew

Tuesday, 30. October 2012 5:26

Dig into a bowl of savory pork stew with miso, sweet potatoes and edamame.

Leave it to Ming Tsai to come up with a Japanese version of Southwestern chili.

The kind that is made for curling up with on a blustery night.

It’s a hearty bowl that will warm you from the inside out with cubes of tender pork, chunks of sweet potatoes, bright green edamame, and a hit of  miso.

It’s from his newest cookbook, “Simply Ming in Your Kitchen” (Kyle), of which I just received a review copy. It’s a clever book of 80 recipes, each of which has an embedded QR code that can be scanned to unlock a video of Tsai cooking the dish from start to finish. Sixteen of the videos — two from each chapter — are free. The others can be purchased from Ming.com.

The chef-proprietor of Blue Ginger in Massachusetts and host of “Simply Ming” on PBS, Tsai has a natural affinity for fusing East-West flavors like the ones in this stew.

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Autumn Kabocha with Miso

Thursday, 25. October 2012 5:25

Sweet kabocha squash for prime-time pumpkin season.

Fall is prime time for pumpkins. But instead of choosing the typical one that thumps its deep orange glow so readily on the outside, choose one that reveals its eye-popping color more shyly only on  the inside instead.

That’s kabocha for ya. Otherwise known as Japanese pumpkin, it’s squatty, a dull deep-green and rather weirdly knobby looking.

But cut it open to reveal its intense orange-hued flesh that’s like a bright tropical morning sunrise.

It’s my favorite hard squash for its incomparable sweetness and dry, fluffy texture akin to a chestnut or sweet potato.

A wonderful way to prepare it is in this super simple dish of “Sake-Steamed Kabocha with Miso” from the new cookbook, “Japanese Farm Food” (Andrews McMeal), of which I recently received a review copy.

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Chef Charles Phan’s Grilled Five-Spice Chicken with Tamarind Sauce

Tuesday, 16. October 2012 5:25

Charles Phan's grilled five-spice chicken with tamarind sauce to spoon over everything.

More than a decade ago, I remember taking my parents to dinner at the Slanted Door for the first time.

Housed in its original location then on Valencia Street in the heart of the Mission District in San Francisco, I remember my Mom getting out of the car and looking around the neighborhood with trepidation. Walking quickly through the somewhat sketchy neighborhood, she clutched my Dad’s arm tightly and murmured, “Where are we going???”

But once ensconced inside the lively restaurant, my parents much enjoyed what was their first real taste of Vietnamese food — from crispy imperial rolls to shaking beef to claypot chicken in caramel sauce.

Indeed, since opening that first restaurant in 1995, Chef-Owner Charles Phan has helped introduce the cuisine of his homeland to countless diners like my parents, luring them out of their comfort zone by virtue of the addicting profusion of fresh herbs and pungent fish sauce that are its hallmarks.

For years, folks have nagged Phan to write a cookbook. But with six restaurants/cafes now, he hardly had the time.

Fortunately for all of us, he finally managed to do it, releasing his first cookbook last month, “Vietnamese Home Cooking” (Ten Speed Press), of which I received a review copy.

The book is filled with beautiful photographs of Phan’s most recent trips to Vietnam. The recipes highlight the fundamental techniques used in Vietnamese cooking: frying, steaming, braising, grilling and stir-frying.

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