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Sweet & Spicy Korean Braised Turkey

You’ve had roast turkey and deep-fried turkey… but what about turkey with real international flavor? This Thanksgiving let’s honor our melting pot culture with a recipe worth talking about. This Korean stuffed turkey breast is perfect for a smaller gathering of curious epicureans, happily feeding 4-6. I can’t decide if the best part is the sweet and spicy glaze (made with soy sauce, mirin, ginger and garlic)… … or the butternut squash stuffing (complete with chestnuts, glutinous rice, and jujube dates)… Or maybe it’s the fact that it can be made on the stovetop… saving the oven for more important things like pie. Lots of pie. The recipe is inspired by a Korean stuffed chicken breast recipe in The Flavors of Asia by Mai Pham. There’s only a couple of watch spots with the recipe. On soaking the rice: depending on the age it can be quite hard and if it isn’t soaked enough it stays that way. Thankfully there’s a guideline on most bags for how long. My recommendation is to double soaking times since the turkey provides a …

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Tuvalu Tuna

If you ever make it to Tuvalu, you might as well snatch the Tuna straight out of the water, fillet it in the boat, and enjoy the mild fish right then and there. No cooking required. That’s the local way. But for those who are looking for something a little more tame, Tuna Curry is an authentic, delicious option. The recipe is very typical of the Pacific: it includes locally caught fish and coconut milk from harvested from the in the back yard, plus a bunch of imported ingredients. Imports are necessary because very little can grow in Tuvalu. The curry powder exudes Indian influence, which runs rampant in Oceania, as well as soy sauce, a definite nod to Tuvalu’s Asian neighbors. Even things like ginger and garlic are imported. Shipments of goods arrive once a month, weather permitting. This means, if you’re pantry runs dry, and the store runs out, then you’ll just have to wait until the giant vessel anchors offshore. And when it does? All hands on deck… Recipe adapted from Andy Explores. …

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Singapore’s Beloved “Chicken Rice”

The minute Anthony Bourdain said he got boo’d in Singapore over Chicken Rice, I knew the recipe had edged out all other contenders for a place on our Singaporean Global Table. It’s true – when the world-renowned food star admitted that, after 7 visits, not only did he not have a favorite Chicken Rice joint, but that he’d never even taken a bite of this national favorite, the apparent transgression was enough to send the crowd in an uproar. I can’t even imagine. Talk about food love. Unexpected and pure.   Food for Thought: All this hoopla made me wonder what about my culture’s food is this way – what dish must a visitor try to have truly experienced American culture? Pizza? Chowder? I have to say, I was stumped. I’d love to hear your thoughts, if anything comes to mind. For, now, back to business… let’s talk Chicken Rice. This is a deceptively simple dish – one that could be summed up as room temperature chicken over rice. But that summary would do the dish a great disservice. There’s …

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Filipino Braised Pork Adobo

Sometimes I have to play games to get through a busy day with a smile. Here are some good things that help me out (in no particular order): – watching the sun peek through the clouds. – listening to my shoes squeak in the library. – counting how often our daughter giggles. – feeling her small hand in mine. Other times it’s all about vinegar, slowly reduced with soy sauce and brown sugar, with a hit of black peppercorn and bay leaf. What? I know, I know. But it’s true. As a long time fan of Vinegar City, Pork Adobo is just right for those sweet and sour days which cling to us like paperweights. Whatever that means. The inspiration comes from our Filipino Global Table, which (in turn) was inspired by the cuisine of Portugal. It would seem adobo can be anything in sauce (particularly vinegar based), but pork adobo is particularly grand with pork belly or shoulder. In other words, any meat that is thick, fatty and wonderful on the slow and low side …

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Lumpia Shanghai

Are you the sun or the moon? Do you shine hot and bright, or glow cool and blue? Is there a better of the two? There’s a Filipino folk tale that says the sun and moon once had an argument. The sun angrily told the moon “you only shine because I shine on you.” The moon spat back, “no one likes you because you’re too hot – at least at night the women can go out and dance under my cool glow.” This made the sun so angry, she threw sand in the moon’s face. And that’s how they say the moon got dark spots all over her face. There’s nothing quite like bitter emotions to bring out our worst characteristics. All too easily we become blindsided by anger, jealousy, and resentment. These are normal parts of living. Of being… well… human beings. But in the midst of all this emotion, there’s a better path than acting out in anger. The key is to realize that we all glow. And that every single glimmering spirit is valuable. …

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Chifa Beef Stirfy | Lomo Saltado

Remember the girls who could do Double Dutch jump rope? I loved them. I loved them because I was never coordinated enough to do what they could do. Every day I watched their hair fly, their feet pump like pistons, and ropes slice through the air. Today, I’m not even sure if I can jump regular rope, let alone Double Dutch. It’s been a long, long time since I’ve been on a playground for my own pleasure. But if there’s one thing I can do, it’s eat double carbs. In this case, I might as well be Peruvian. I’m talking about Chifa – a fusion of Peruvian and Chinese food… and it’s not something just a few people love. Chifa is Peru’s heart and soul, considered one of the country’s top favorite dishes. Today’s Lomo Saltado is a simple beef stir-fry, but made with Peruvian peppers, cilantro, and  cumin (of all things). And… this is the important part… Chifa is served with French Fries and rice. Double carb town. Lomo Saltado is the strangest sounding combination, …

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Micronesian Ginger & Lime Marinade

In college I went by MacGyver. It had nothing to do with my ability to save lives (with little more than a shoestring and a balloon), and everything to do with feeding my four hungry roommates in the face of the greatest of obstacles (an empty refrigerator). I once made them lasagna without pasta or sauce. True story. Which brings me to this Micronesian marinade. There are four fantastic reasons to make it: 1. There is really no need to measure the ingredients. I have it on a local’s authority that any ratio works well. 2. The marinade tastes grand on just about anything. Fish. Chicken. Steak. Tofu. Leather shoes. 3. The marinade does double duty as a dipping sauce. 4.  Katrina says so. Katrina is the gal from Micronesia who emailed me, recommending that I try this marinade. To be honest that was enough motivation for me. And when she said any proportions will do? That was the clincher. I like not measuring. It’s more fun to simply dump a few ingredients into a bowl at …

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Korean Saute Sauce & Marinade

This recipe is for those times when an airplane ticket isn’t in the budget… … When a two week’s vacation won’t fit into the schedule. … When the daydream only gets you halfway to the dream. Splash a little of this sauce in your frying pan – let it dance and sizzle and pop. Serve with bibimbap, if you dare! Welcome to Korea. Makes 3/4 cup Ingredients: 1/2 cup sesame oil soy sauce, to taste 3 cloves garlic, chopped 1 inch ginger, grated 1 green onion, chopped 2 Tbsp sugar 1/2 tsp black pepper salt, to taste Method: Are you ready? Don’t blink or you’ll miss it. Chop the ingredients, give them all a whisk and use as needed. Ta-dah! Enjoy – live the dream! Votes: 0 Rating: 0 You: Rate this recipe! Print Recipe Splash a little of this sauce in your frying pan – let it dance and sizzle and pop. Serve with bibimbap, if you dare! Welcome to Korea.Korean Saute Sauce & Marinade LifestyleGrilling, Quick Food TypeSauces & Dressings Servings Prep Time …

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Vegetarian Sushi | Futomaki

Makes 6 rolls (on 1/2 sheet nori seeweed) – serves 2 Do you have a yearning to be creative? An artist? Do you want to release your imagination into the wild? Are you also hungry? The answer is sushi. While sushi making is an art that requires years of training to master, everyone can play the game. It’s like I tell my husband – you don’t have to be Michelangelo to paint a personal masterpiece. Similarly, you don’t have to be a sushi chef to fill your belly with satisfying sushi. Today we’re tackling futomaki. Futomaki is a large sushi roll, typically filled with vegetables and/or cooked fish. I thought this was a good place to start for those of us who don’t have refrigerated work spaces for handling raw fish. After all, let’s be honest. This is all about fun. Not tummy troubles. So let’s get our art on and make some sushi. Once you get the hang of it, I highly suggest having a sushi themed small dinner party. It’s super sushi fun. Here’s what you …

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Jamaican Jerk Seasoning

Makes about 3 cups Are you in need of a lil’ pep in your step? Do you want to go beyond your comfort zone? Would you like to make your taste buds burn with the fire of Jamaican delight? I am. I do. I would. Also, a friend’s birthday is coming up, and she loves spicy food. In a pretty bottle, with a cute recipe card, jerk seasoning makes quite the fabulous gift. So, join me friends. Let’s go on a stovetop journey to the clear waters of Jamaica, where we can heat things up for ourselves and a friend or two. Ingredients: Liquid: 1/4 cup soy sauce 1/2 cup orange juice Produce: 3 habenerno (scotch bonnet) peppers 1 green bell pepper 4 green onions 1 onion 4 cloves garlic 1 hunk ginger – about 1 inch, peeled and cut 5 sprigs fresh thyme – leaves stripped from the stem 3 fresh basil leaves 3 sprigs parsley leaves Spices: 1 Tbsp whole allspice 1 Tbsp cinnamon 1 Tbsp nutmeg 1 Tbsp black pepper 1 Tbsp salt Method: …

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Guyanese Chow Mein

Serves 4 Hello. I realize it’s summer, but let’s shut our eyes for a moment and daydream about winter. In Guyana. Are you ready for Christmas? Shall we deck the halls? (do people really do that?). Ready or not, today’s recipe is going to take you to December 25th, Guyanese-style. Read this: The kids got their little presents, got their pictures taken on my lap, and everyone ate fried rice, chow mein, and chicken curry. You know, traditional Christmas food. From Mark Hejinian’s travel blog Guyanese Mark My first reaction? I want to spend Christmas in Guyana. Immediately. It doesn’t help that it’s a zillion degrees here, but a nice cool winter day would be welcome right about now. And that menu? Yes, yes, yes. So let’s dig into what this dish is all about. While Chow Mein might sound like a stretch for the South American dinner table, Guyanese love this dish with a passion. It’s not a straight up copycat operation, however – they add plenty of unique touches, to make Chow Mein …

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Chicken Meatball Soup | Bakso Noodle Soup

Serves 6 When it’s cold outside, gather around a steaming bowl of Bakso Noodle Soup – you’ll be refreshed by the bright flavors and warmed by the chili sauce. You can bring this soup to a potluck – just keep the tofu, green onions, and chili sauce in a separate dishes for diners to garnish their own bowls. While the soup is traditionally Indonesian, it is also sold by street vendors in East Timor, a country formerly part of Indonesia.  Ingredients: 1 bok choy, rinsed and sliced 3 green onions, sliced thinly 1 center section of celery – where it is 1/2 leaves and 1/2 ribs – sliced thinly 1 quart chicken stock 6 cups water (or stock) 1/8 cup soy sauce (more to taste) salt Additional soup components (all to taste): Chicken bakso meatballs cooked ramen noodles chili sauce green onions Deep-fried tofu Method: Let’s get a kaleidescope of green in our diets. Our doctors would be proud. Rinse and trim the produce… Then slice and toss in a large pot.  First the bok …

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