Home > Appetizers > An Asian-Inspired Dinner Party or Anyone Can Cook Anything!

Yeah, that’s my take on cooking food outside your ethnicity. All it takes is knowing what you like, a few good seasoning agents*, a dash of confidence and access to google for recipes or to answer any last-minute questions. It may not be “authentic”, but it could (should) be tasty.

The type of Asian cuisine I prefer is clean and balanced. It’s all about the yin-yang.

Having just returned from NY where I ate at the newly-opened Ivan Ramen, I wanted to re-create the delicious cold ramen dish I had there (well, as best I could). Then, as usual in the FOODalogue kitchen, one thing led to another and I invited a few people over.

Here’s the menu I created and some tips on how to make these dishes.

Edamame-Avocado Dip
Cook edamame and mash with 1/2 Haas avocado, cilantro, red onion, lime juice, coarse salt, chili flakes and a dash of rice vinegar.

Eggplant Spread
Roast in oven at 400 degrees till interior is soft by knife prick. Cool, split and scoop out meat. Mix with chopped cilantro, garlic, ginger, red chili flakes, salt, rice wine vinegar, fresh lemon juice and toasted sesame seeds. Chill and serve at room temp.

Wasabi-coated peanuts and toasted (split) wontons seasoned with salt and chili flakes.

Pork Meaballs with 2 Dipping Sauces
Ground pork, chopped scallions, garlic and cilantro, fish sauce, soy sauce, ginger, salt and pepper (no binder). Brown in coconut oil and finish in oven.
Sweet chili cream (‘laced’ sour cream) – and – almond sauce (almond nut butter diluted with rice vinegar and a dash of sesame oil).

*       *      *

Cold Citrus-Vegetable Ramen
Cook noodles (mine were frozen) in boiling water for 3 minutes, drain, rinse, mix with lemon juice and refrigerate. Separately mix organic vegetable broth with a few splashes of soy sauce or fish sauce, quartered lemon and limes, garlic, ginger, scallions, mild jalapeño and aromatics. Bring to a boil. Cool down and refrigerate. To serve, strain and ladle cold broth into bowl, add noodles and swish around, top with thin slices of lemon, julienned seedless cucumber and mushroom, a leaf of baby bok choy and cilantro. Never fill bowl — you need room to slurp the noodles out.

Grilled Soy and Garlic-Dipped Shrimp and Purple Snow Peas with Raw Radish, Seedless Cucumber and Shredded Carrot Slaw
Dressed with cilantro, rice vinegar, honey and sesame oil vinaigrette. Finished with sprinkle of sesame seeds.

short ribd-DSC_0002

Short Ribs with Green Bamboo and Black Forbidden Rice Duo
Marinate ribs overnight in a mix of sweet chili sauce, ponzu, mirin, soy sauce, fish sauce, star anise, scallions and garlic. Cook in crock pot till fork tender. Reduce and thicken sauce. Finish with sprinkle of sesame seeds and scallion rings.

Brussels Sprouts
Sauteed and braised with a little vegetable broth and oil, a dash of ponzu and chopped almonds.

*       *      *

Dessert
Mochi Ice Cream Bonbons, Ceremonial Tea Cake, and Fortune Cookies (all store bought).

Note: Everything here was prepped and prepared in advance. No cooking once guests arrive. Never! The party begins for them and me!

*With any of these items in your pantry/refrigerator, you too can create an Asian flair in your dishes: sesame oil, rice vinegar, soy sauce, sweet chili sauce, fish sauce, sriracha, mirin, ponzu.


8 Comments, RSS

  • Norma

    says on:
    August 31, 2014 at 11:00 pm

    What a spread my friend. As usual “te botaste”.
    Norma recently posted..TOMATO MEDLEY HONEY TARTMy Profile

  • Brenda Benoit

    says on:
    August 31, 2014 at 11:33 pm

    Good eats! Looks delicious!

  • Brenda Benoit

    says on:
    August 31, 2014 at 11:34 pm

    Good eats! Wish I was there 🙂
    Brenda Benoit recently posted..Comfort Food Before SchoolMy Profile

  • La Diva Cucina

    says on:
    September 8, 2014 at 9:33 am

    At first I saw just the photos of the meatballs and thought, “that’s it?” Where’s the food? And then you proceeded to put on a huge spread! Love the short ribs! What is green bamboo? And where did you find purple snowpeas? And the desserts? Do you have a good Asian store near you? I just bought some more ponzu and will be using it more. Everything looks delicious.
    La Diva Cucina recently posted..Sweet (NOT SAVORY!) Tomato Cheesecake with a Roasted Tomato, Strawberry and Balsamic Vinegar Sauce!My Profile

    • Joan Nova

      says on:
      September 8, 2014 at 9:43 am

      Thanks Laura! I go to an Oriental Market in Boca although I got the green bamboo rice in one of those spice shops that have flavored salts and sugars. And, as for the snow peas, I just happened on them in The Boys (a Italian market in Delray). Warning: they bleed somewhat like red beets.

  • Victoria of Flavors of the Sun

    says on:
    September 17, 2014 at 11:03 am

    Purple snow peas? Where have I been.

    It is official, I am applying to be added to your guest list. Lovely meal. Inspired, as always.
    Victoria of Flavors of the Sun recently posted..How to Make Preserved Lemons and Use ThemMy Profile

  • Eleanor Hoh

    says on:
    September 23, 2014 at 11:35 pm

    Joan, you are a knock out hostess! I wish we lived closer so I can observe how you cook, we are two peas in a pod, it’s how I cook too so it’s always lovely to see your posts without measurements or recipes. This dinner is outstanding and so innovative. Love the table decorations down to the fresh green apples lined up in a row, so sharp! Thanks for promoting Asian inspired dinners, I hope more folks will cook like you! You’re an inspiration.
    Eleanor Hoh recently posted..6 Tips To Help You Be More Creative with Dinners!My Profile

    • Joan Nova

      says on:
      September 24, 2014 at 7:25 am

      wow, wow! Thank you Ms. Eleanor, aka Wokstar!

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