Saturday, August 8, 2015

Sharon's Spicy Cucumber

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Cousin Sharon took me to Din Tai Fung restaurant at South Coast Plaza Mall on my recent trip to Southern California. As we were eating the spicy cucumber salad, Sharon shared her recipe for them. Of course, I had to make them when I returned home. They are so flavorful with just the right amount of heat in them. Thanks, Sharon for sharing!

Ingredients:
4-5 Persian cucumbers
Kosher salt
1 T sugar
1 T Japanese rice vinegar (unseasoned)
1 T chili oil
Sesame oil

Cut the Persian cucumbers in 3/4' to 1" chunks (as pictured above). Sprinkle a generous amount of kosher salt on the cucumbers, and set aside for 20 minutes. Rinse the cucumbers in cold water, drain and pat dry with paper towels.  In a small glass bowl, mix the vinegar and sugar and microwave for 20 seconds until the sugar is dissolved.  When it has cooled down, pour it over the cucumbers. Refrigerate for 2 hours. When ready to serve, place the cucumbers in a serving dish. Heat the chili oil in the microwave for 15-20 seconds until hot, and pour over the cucumbers. Drizzle sesame oil on top.

If you cannot find the chili oil at the grocery store, you can substitute it with 1 tablespoon of peanut oil mixed with 2 tsp Sriracha hot sauce (the one with the rooster label).

Friday, August 7, 2015

Jennifer's Asian Grilled Salmon or Halibut

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I got this fish marinade recipe from my buddy, Jennifer Powell, while she was in Alaska.  It's an Ina Garten recipe that she has modified with the addition of grated ginger.  I chose a different method of cooking it, by baking it in the oven, adding reserved marinade for extra flavor. We will definitely make this one again!

Ingredients:
Fresh salmon or halibut fillets
2 T Dijon mustard
3 T soy sauce
6 T extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp minced garlic (about 3 cloves)
1/2 - 1" piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated

Mix the marinade ingredients together.  Reserve 1/4 of the marinade for later use.  Marinate the fish for at least 2 hours in the refrigerator in a large Ziploc bag.  Place the salmon on a lightly greased baking pan.  Baste the rest of the marinade onto the fish.  Bake at 425 degrees for 12-15 min. depending on thickness of the fish.