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Roasted Asparagus Salad with Vinaigrette and Black Garlic Yogurt Sauce

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Roasted Asparagus Salad with Vinaigrette and Black Garlic Yogurt Sauce

This festive salad has two dressings: a classic vinaigrette and a yogurt-based sauce, which was inspired by Ottolenghi, The Cookbook. The acidity in the vinaigrette is balanced nicely by the creaminess of the yogurt.  In addition, the sweetness and floral notes in the fermented black garlic in the yogurt sauce goes very nicely with the stronger pungent aspects of the raw garlic in the vinaigrette.  Make sure to scoop up some of the yogurt sauce with each serving of salad!

A tip for seeding the pomegranate: Cut it in half through the middle and then, over a large bowl, whack the rounded part of the pomegranate with a sturdy wooden spoon while loosely holding the cut side in your other hand. The seeds should fall right out.

Serves 6

Salad

1 lb. asparagus 

2 firm persimmons, peeled and sliced

3 Persian cucumbers, sliced

¼ - ½ cup Marcona almonds, chopped

Seeds of one pomegranate 

½ cup mint leaves, roughly chopped

½ cup cilantro, roughly chopped

olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Vinaigrette   

2 tablespoons lime juice (or to taste)

2 tablespoons honey

½ cup olive oil 

1 clove garlic, minced

Salt to taste

Black Garlic Yogurt Sauce

16 oz. plain Greek yogurt (whole milk)

Zest of one lime

3 tablespoons black garlic, minced 

3 tablespoons oil-cured black olives, minced

1 tablespoon olive oil

Coat asparagus in olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast under the broiler until the tips are brown and crispy. When cool, cut asparagus into 2-inch pieces and put into a large bowl along with the cucumbers, persimmons, cilantro, mint and almonds, and pomegranate seeds. 

To make the vinaigrette mix all the ingredients together and whisk rapidly.  The honey will emulsify the vinaigrette.  Taste for salt and tartness.  The vinaigrette should be tart, so add more lime juice if it is too sweet. 

To make the yogurt sauce, mix the yogurt, lime zest, black garlic, olives and olive oil in a small bowl until well blended. Spread the yogurt sauce on the bottom of a serving plate, toss the vegetables with the vinaigrette, and place the vegetables on top of the yogurt sauce. Serve immediately.

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Homemade Thai Spiced Potato Chips

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Homemade Thai Spiced Potato Chips

Sometimes at a Super Bowl party, you want Frito Lays with canned Hormel chili (no beans; don't be ridiculous) and Velveeta. Theres nothing wrong with that. It tastes good!

I'm from Denver, so every year the Broncos make it as far as the Super Bowl, I also make two pans of rice krispies treats at my house. One batch is orange, and one is blue. Even if the Raiders are in it, Im still gonna make my orange and blue rice krispies. I've lived in the Bay Area for 20 years, but once your arch enemy, always your arch enemy.  

Sometimes at a Super Bowl party, you want chips with onion dip, tiny pizzas and beer.  

And sometimes you want to make those homemade potato chips and caramelize the onions for the handmade dip. Maybe the pizzas are tiny tarte flambées made with specialty puff pastry, and the beer is home brewed. Just sayin. If this is one of those years for you—like it is for me—this recipes for you.

Homemade Thai Spiced Potato Chips

Serves 4

  • Ginger - 25 g
  • Galangal - 25 g
  • Lemongrass - 2 stalks
  • Thai chilis - 25 g
  • Lime leaves - 20 leaves
  • Coconut - 25 g unsweetened shredded
  • Takii umami powder
  • 4 Russet potatoes
  1. Dehydrate all of the spice mix ingredients except the Takii powder on separate shelves in a dehydrator.  The ginger, lemongrass and galangal should be cut into thin slices to speed up the dehydration.  [Most ingredients will take only a few hours to dehydrate, but do this the day before in case some of the ingredients need to be dehydrated overnight.]
  2. Roughly chop each ingredient before grinding in a spice grinder.
  3. Grind Takii powder in a spice grinder.
  4. Mix 10g each of ginger, galangal, lemongrass and coconut.  Add lime leaves, chilis and Takii powder to taste.
  5. Cut potatoes into 3mm slices using a mandoline (no need to peel).
  6. Cook potato slices for 3 to 5 minutes in boiling, salted water.  The potato should taste cooked.
  7. When cooked potatoes cool, fry at 165C (330F) until brown and crispy.  This will likely need to be done in 3 to 4 batches to avoid overloading the fryer. 
  8. Immediately transfer potato chips to a large bowl, add some spice mix and toss to coat.

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Smoked corn "noodles" recipe

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Smoked corn "noodles" recipe

For National Spaghetti Day we are sharing a modernist recipe that looks like spaghetti but doesn't actually contain any pasta! This smoked corn noodles dish has noodles made of smoked corn cob infused broth with a sauce of thickened Vietnamese-style nuoc cham, all topped with fried shallots, mint and hibiscus crystals. The noodles are made with a mixture of hydrocolloids, which provide a chewy, noodle-like texture (courtesy of Rich Rosendale).  And remember, the same three steps are almost always used with hydrocolloids: disperse, fully hydrate with heat, and cool.  The dish is smoky, savory, sweet and tart, in addition to being gluten free and pescatarian safe.   

Smoked Corn Noodles with Nuoc Cham

Nuoc cham:

  • Sugar - 60 g
  • Xanthan gum - 0.8 g
  • Fish sauce - 60 g
  • Rice vinegar - 30 g
  • Lime juice  - 30 g
  • Garlic, minced - 10 g
  • Bird’s-eye chili, minced - 1

Noodles:

  • Broth - 900 g of chicken or pork broth
  • Smoked corn cobs - 6 ears of corn smoked for 30 min to 1 hour (until corn kernels are cooked) at 135C (275F) 
  • Salt - to taste
  • Locust bean gum - 3 g  
  • Kappa carrageenan - 1 g
  • Iota carrageenan - 5 g
  • Calcium lactate - 0.5 g 
  • Mint leaves - 12 small leaves
  • Cilantro leaves - 12 small leaves
  • Fried shallots - 30 g
  • Hibiscus Flower Crystals from Fresh Origins - 10 g

Method:

  1. Mix sugar and xanthan gum together
  2. Mix all ingredients for nuoc chom together and sprinkle in sugar/xanthan gum mixture while whisking
  3. Whisk to dissolve sugar and xanthan gum for at least one minute to fully dissolve and then set aside
  4. After corn is removed from smoked corn ears (and kept to use for another purpose), steep corn cobs in broth for one hour at a low simmer
  5. Season the broth to taste, but be careful not to over salt because the nuoc cham will be salty
  6. Strain the broth
  7. In a blender, disperse (blend in slowly) the locust bean gum, kappa carrageenan, iota carrageenan and calcium lactate 
  8. While stirring constantly, heat mixture to 70C (158F)
  9. Pour mixture into a flat tray to set.  It should be no more than 1/4 inch deep.
  10. Let cool to solidify
  11. Cut smoked corn broth into 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick noodles
  12. Portion noodles and dress with nuoc cham to taste
  13. Top noodles with fried shallots, cilantro, mint, and Flower Crystals

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