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Susur at Brickworks?!?!??!?

22 Jul

susur urbanpocketknife

Oh yes, I do love those farmer’s markets so when I went to Toronto in May, my dear friend brought me to Brickworks on a Saturday to see what Toronto had to offer.  It was a bit early in the season so there were lots of greens and carrots but no bounty of fruit yet.

As we were deciding on what to eat for lunch, we stumbled upon some guys all suited up in white chefy outfits…wait a minute…I recognize this salad!

Oh indeed, Susur’s famous Singapore slaw was being sold for $5 a box….$5!!!!! 19 ingredients artfully mixed together, my favourite is the edible flowers and crispy rice noo

I was being all green and such that day so I asked if they could put the salad in my tupperware I had tucked in my bag…what nice boys 🙂

Here’s the recipe I pulled from here:

What you need!
1 Pickled Red Onion (see recipe below)
1 1/2 cups Salted Apricot Dressing (see recipe below)
2 green onions, both white and green parts, julienned
2 ounces rice vermicelli, broken into 3 pieces
1 large English cucumber, julienned
1 large carrot, peeled and julienned
1 small jicama, peeled and julienned
2 large Roma tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and thinly sliced
4 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
6 teaspoons crushed roasted peanuts
4 teaspoons edible flower petals
4 teaspoons fennel seedlings
4 teaspoons purple basil seedlings
4 teaspoons daikon sprouts
4 teaspoons fried shallots

Pickled Red Onion
1 red onion
1 cup rice wine vinegar
1cup water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 bay leaf
1 sprig thyme

Salted Apricot Dressing
1 cup salted apricot (ume) paste
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon mirin
1 teaspoon dashi
1 1/2 tablespoon onion oil
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
1/4 teaspoon sea salt

What to do!

For Pickled Red Onion:
1.  Peel and julienne red onion and set aside in a medium bowl.

2.  In small saucepan, bring vinegar and water to a boil. Season with salt, peppercorns, fennel seeds, bay leaf and thyme; continue boiling for another 5 minutes. Pour mixture over onion while hot and let sit for 1 hour.

For Salted Apricot Dressing:
In blender, combine apricot paste, vinegar, mirin, Dashi, Onion Oil, sugar, ginger, and salt. Puree until smooth.

For Singapore Slaw Salad:
1.  Soak green onion in very cold water to keep crisp.

2.  Meanwhile, heat large pot of oil. When temperature reaches 400°F, deep fry taro root, half the amount at a time, for 2 minutes until crisp and light gold in color. Remove slices from oil, place on paper towel, and lightly salt.

3.  At same temperature, quickly deep fry vermicelli, half at a time, for 2 seconds, or until they curl. Remove vermicelli from oil, place on paper towel, and lightly salt.

To serve:
1.  Remove julienned green onion from bowl and drain.

2.  Divide vermicelli equally between 4 plates and arrange green onion, cucumber, carrot, jicama, tomatoes, and pickled red onion around noodles.

3.  Top with fried taro root.

4.  Sprinkle toasted sesame seeds and crushed peanuts over each salad.

5.  In small bowl, combine edible flower petals, seedlings, sprouts, and fried shallots.

6.  Sprinkle flower-sprout-shallot mixture on salad and serve with Salted Apricot Dressing alongside.


tuna mango ceviche with rosemary flatbread…

15 Jul

tuna mango ceviche urbanpocketknife

So I made this foolproof appetizer for a dinner party one night because a) it’s easy and b) it’s damn tasty.  Fresh raw tuna belly with some mango and pepper friends make this a great ceviche.  I took a 1/3 measuring cup as my mold 🙂 Add some fresh pea shoots and some rosemary cracker/flatbread and you’ve got yourself a tasty little appetizer!

Click the links for the recipes!

Tuna belly mango ceviche

Rosemary almond crackers

cauliflower dunganess crab truffle oil soup…

7 Jul

cauliflower crab soup urbanpocketknife

Whoa…I recently went to Seattle and ate at Toulouse Petit.  Holy moly, was it ever a great creole/southern style restaurant!  With reasonable prices and a huge selection of menu items, their food is quite amazing!

The most notable thing I had was my appetizer, a pureed cauliflower soup with dunganess crab marinated in truffle oil, finished off with creme fraiche and a little horseradish.  I could eat vats of this creamy soup all day.

As soon as I ate it I knew I had to try and make it at home!  Damn!  I forgot the horseradish but nonetheless, it turned out great!

Here’s the recipe!

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blueberry vinaigrette salad…

9 May

blueberry salad urbanpocketknife

It’s that time of year again, Klipper’s has started selling their fresh greens again!  With their awesome salad mix that contains a variety of baby lettuces including arugula, mizuna and mustard greens, we’re eating our greens again!  BBQ with salad is the fastest most tastiest good weather food that we can muster.  Ground lamb patties with savoury grilled eggplant, and a healthy helping of spinach salad with blueberry vinaigrette!

This tasty little dressing looks amazing and is surprisingly not too sweet…here’s the recipe!

What you need!
1/2 cup blueberries
4 tbsp vinegar (sometimes I use balsamic sometimes I use rice vinegar)
1 tbsp dijon mustard
2 tbsp plain yogurt
2 tbsp mix of dried herbs (I like thyme and oregano)
salt and pepper to taste
olive oil

What to do!

1.  Put all the ingredients in a tall container and whirl with a hand blender.  The olive oil is up to you how much you want to put in, it just depends on how thick you want the dressing and how mellow you want it to be (more oil = more mellow).   Experiment!  The yogurt will give it a creamy texture while omitting it will give you a slightly lighter dressing.


blueberry salad urbanpocketknife

homemade charred caesar salad…

15 Mar

caesar salad urbanpocketknife

The first time I had a caesar salad where they didn’t cut up the romaine lettuce was at the 360 revolving restaurant in Toronto back in the early 2000s.  I remember thinking it was clever because you could design your own perfect bite size piece of salad.  No annoying large leaves that you have to wrangle in your mouth or dried out edges.

An ex-boyfriend of mine years ago made me caesar salad from scratch and I was surprised to learn that there were anchovies in it, seems like my brain stored this memory way back in my head.  Well several years later, here I am, making a charred version with some homemade dressing of my own…here’s the recipe!

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curry apple butternut squash soup…

27 Oct

Nothing will warm up your bones like a steaming thick cup of butternut soup.  Along with the classic onion base, I added some apples and some curry spice to make it extra warm in your belly.

Here’s the recipe!

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roasted tomato and squash soup…

13 Oct

Squash makes such a pretty soup.  It’s always a fun colour, has a full flavour and is one of those kind of soups that instantly makes you feel warm and cozy.  Great for a starter or with some large chunks of bread for lunch.  Preparing it couldn’t be easier!  To add some extra zest, I added some tomato liquid that was left over from roasting my tomatoes for canning.

Here’s the recipe!

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