Sunday, June 29, 2014

What to get at the Asian Market

I've had this recipe on my tablet for a while, meaning to either ask Nexx to write up an entry or to just put it up myself. It's a great side dish, though I'm damned if I can remember just what we served it with.

I have, in learning about Asian food, come to enjoy the lightness and tang of some side dishes and salads. An easy snack is slicking cucumbers adding black sesame seeds and stirring them up with some ponzu. Ponzu, if you have not experienced it, is a citrus-based sauce. A lot of what you see in stores is actually ponzu shoyu, which means there is soy sauce involved, but it's commonly called ponzu.

I love cabbage, maybe it's the Polish ancestry. I love a good coleslaw, kraut, or golabki. I have on occasion made "lazy pierogie" which is fried cabbage and onions stirred up with medium-sized pasta shells.

But I digress (surprise, surprise). The following recipe is easy, tasty and light, which is perfect for summer days ahead. I think I'll serve it alongside next time Austin grills some salmon with an Asian-themed sauce.

Napa Cabbage Salad (serves 2)

10 leaves of Napa cabbage
1 dried kombu
60 g bonito flakes (which are also delicious stirred up with rice and soy sauce. A great way to use up leftover rice)
15 g of ponzu

Slice off the bottom 5 cm of the cabbage leaves and set them aside for another use (soup comes to mind). Pour boiling water on the kombu and let it rest while you prepare the rest of the salad.

Cut the cabbage leaves horizontally into strips about 1 cm wide (figure half an inch). Cut the kombu into strips about 2 cm long and 5 mm wide. Mix the cabbage, kombu, bonito and ponzu in a bowl. Serve chilled.

Delicious, light and nicely crunchy. Enjoy!

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