Doug’s Tunachos

a fusion of traditional Hawaiian Poke and Mexican nachos

Serves 6

For the Poke

Ingredients:
2 C ahi (yellowfin tuna, sashimi grade) diced as small as you can
¼ C sweet red onion, minced
¼ C scallions, green parts only sliced thin
½ C soy sauce
1 T sesame oil – I used hot chili sesame oil I found at the Chinese market
½ tsp red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:
Season Ahi with Hawaiian or other good finishing salt. Add all ingredients, mix well then chill for 3 hours tossing occasionally.

For the Cheese Mixture

4 C finely crumbled good quality Queso Fresco cheese
1 cob of corn – husk on but “de-silked”
2 medium red peppers
1 or 2 Jalapeno peppers (Use 2 if you’re using those wimpy jalapenos you get at most grocery stores. Use one if you’re using the real deal you get at the local farmer’s market). Remember there is some heat in the Poke as well.

High quality nacho chips (I used some made fresh by Don Antonio’s at the downtown market)

Preparation
Peel back but don’t remove the husk on the corn and remove the silk.  “Re-wrap” the cob in the husk and soak in cold water for up to an hour.

Prepare your BBQ with a healthy handful of soaked mesquite in a foil pouch.  Once it is smoking, roast the red peppers, the jalapeno and the corn.  Remove the red pepper and the jalapeno when they are charred and put in a paper bag to cool.  Continue cooking the corn in its husk until the husk is blackened and you can see some of the corn kernels starting to turn brown.  Remove the corn and let cool in the husk.

When cooled, take the peppers out of the bag and remove the blackened skin; slice open; de-vein and de-seed.  Finely chop the roasted red and jalapeno peppers and add to the Queso Fresco. Husk the corn and slice off the kernels.  Add the corn to the Queso Fresco and pepper mixture and stir well.

I served this dish as an appetizer so I arranged four large nacho chips on a smallish rectangular plate with the concave surface facing up and serving as a dish for the cheese mixture.  Scoop a couple of tablespoons of the chees mixture into each nacho chip.  Arrange the plates on a cookie sheet and place under a medium hot broiler. Be careful not to let the chips burn.  You may have to fiddle with temperature a bit to get this right.  The Queso Fresco will not melt but it will begin to turn brown.

When the nacho chips and mixture have a nice brown surface remove from the broiler.  Top each nacho chip with a scoop of Poke and serve immediately.

Goes great with chilled Perseco

Because the most important thing about food is whether or not you are getting some.

Foodies’ tags hijacked for good on Instagram

Because as amusing as cuisines are, this whole endeavor is only possible because we have more than enough to eat.

#yummy #brunch #food #foodporn are among the most popular hashtags on Instagram. For some reason people just love to share what they eat, flooding the social network with images of snacks, delicious dishes and plates full of food. So why not take advantage of this visual food overdose trend to deliver a strong social message over the holiday period? This is the story of a social media hijack. A smart (and free) media placement on Instagram to highlight that 5,000 people in Sweden won’t have enough food or shelter this holiday season.

Pool and non-profit organization Soppkok Stockholm (Soup Kitchen Stockholm) posted their own photos on Instagram, showing empty dishes and a clear direct message. Then the tagged the images with the right keywords to make them show up in the feed of the foodies and open their eyes on the struggle of a lot of people. What a simple, great idea.

Another TED: on community gardens changing the world: Pam Warhurst

If we viewed information like food

Interesting talk even if it just barely grazes on the topic. I like the idea that information can lack nutritional value…

Laurie’s Sesame Crusted Tuna Balls with Ginger

250 grams of fresh sushi-grade tuna, minced
2 tsp minced red chilies
2 T minced chives
1 tsp salt
½ tsp fresh ground black pepper
2 tsp sesame oil
½ T grated fresh ginger
4 T of mixed black and white sesame seeds
Oil for deep-frying
Toothpicks

1. Combine minced tuna with the chili, chives, salt, pepper, sesame oil and ginger in a bowl. Mix well.
2. Place the sesame seeds on a plate. Wet your hands, scoop 1 tablespoon of the tuna mixture and roll into a ball. Roll the tuna ball in the sesame seeds until well coated on all sides. Repeat until tuna is used up.
3. Deep fry the tuna balls over high heat for 1 minute, turning constantly. Serve immediately with the toothpicks.

From: Asian Tapas – small bites, big flavors (Christophe Megel and Anton Kilayko)

Doug’s Miso Shrimp Soup

Serves 8

6 C boiling water
6 T white Miso
4 Thai red chilies, seeded and chopped fine
2 T of chopped, fresh ginger
2 T soya sauce
2 T Mirin
2 tsp white sugar (optional, white Miso is a little sweet)

Soba noodles or any kind of rice noodle

4 green onions, chopped into ½ inch pieces (mostly the white parts – don’t use the very end of the green part.
2 C fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped
1 C cilantro, roughly chopped
½ to 1kilo shrimp, peeled and deveined, tail-on

Boil water and add Miso. When dissolved, add next five ingredients and simmer for 5 minutes. Add shrimp, spinach and chopped green onion. Cook until shrimps are pink.

Cook noodles in separate pot (they cook really fast).

Put noodles in bottom of bowls. Ladle over the soup. Garnish with Cilantro

Ta da!

ps. this off the cuff soup by Doug was phenomenal!! -Paul

Taste: What You’re Missing

Barb Stuckey, a professional food developer, has written one of the most interesting books about food I have read in some time. The book features a wonderful deconstruction of flavour components as well as plenty of information on how various aspects such as acidity interact to produce a pleasing overall taste.

One thing that struck me though, is that she mentions that from a flavour viewpoint, you leave the apex of enjoyment after a few bites. In other words, from a utilitarian standpoint, it should all be tasting menus. However, I have found that with some soups or stir fries, a suddenly deep and strongly satisfying flavour can emerge after eating a dish for a while (such as half way through the bowl of soup). What first seemed bland and unassuming suddenly blossoms into something remarkable. I have also experienced this with wine. It seems as though you are reaching some sort of critical mass with a subtle undertone.

I have written her to get her view on this.