You may want to put all your other cookbooks on waivers for a while and simply settle in to Simply Ming
by Ming Tsai and Arthur Boehm. Tsai's the chef and owner of Blue Ginger in Wellesley, Massachusetts, and the host of Food Network's East Meets West
. This particular book ties in with a show of the same title he's doing for public television.
Tsai has cut a wide swath through the food world with his creative blending of Eastern flavors and techniques with Western ingredients and presentations. Consider Asian Pesto Turkey Spaghetti, for example. This is Tsai-style spaghetti Bolognese, and it demonstrates the structure of the book. First comes the master recipe for Asian Pesto. Instead of basil, garlic, pine nuts, olive oil, and ground Romano--your classic pesto--Tsai calls for jalapeno chilies, garlic, sugar, ginger, macadamia nuts or salted peanuts, lemon zest, mint leaves, cilantro, salt and pepper, and basil and olive oil. For the Turkey Spaghetti you'll use ground turkey, red onion, button mushrooms, and white wine, as well as the Asian Pesto. In this particular chapter you'll also find recipes for Asian Pesto Chicken Salad, and Grilled Asian Pesto Shrimp and Radicchio.
This is a book about assembling major flavor statements ahead of time and storing them in the refrigerator. The actual cooking becomes a relatively rapid process while delivering maximum flavor. The sections in Simply Ming include Flavored Oils and Sauces; Sambals, Salsas, Chutneys, and Pastes; Dressings, Dipping Sauces, and Marinades: Syrups; Broths; Rubs and Coatings; Doughs and Desserts.
It's fast. It's flavorful. It's from both sides of the world. --Schuyler Ingle
From Publishers Weekly
Tsai, the irrepressible host of the Food Network's East Meets West and chef of Boston's Blue Ginger restaurant, is doing things differently on this print venture. Rather than embarking on a parade of salads, soups followed by vegetable, proteins and starches, he organizes this book by dominant flavors, like Hoisin-Lime Sauce, Roasted Pepper-Lemongrass Sambal and Soy-Dijon Marinade. Besides making the book easier to use (no more flipping around looking for sub-recipes), the sauce-based structure makes the most daunting part of the cooking easy to prepare ahead of time. Big flavors and easy prep-as in Roasted Miso-Citrus Chicken, Scallion-Crusted Cod with Mango Salsa, and Broiled Stuffed Eggplant with Black Pepper-Garlic Sauce-are essential to the Ming method. This isn't virtuoso cooking or high-concept pan-Asian like Patricia Yeo's. But Tsai (Blue Ginger) is a culinary magpie who creates the oddest juxtapositions with the fewest ingredients: Carrot-Chipotle Syrup, Kimchee "Choucroute" with Seared Dijon Halibut, Tea-rubbed Salmon with Country Mash, Potato Pancakes with Apple-Scallion Cream. Cultural borrowing on this order of magnitude can be intimidating for the home cook, which may be why the chef has concentrated the considerable force of his winning personality on making the recipes accessible. His cuisine may not win converts among the fusion-phobic, but only the hopelessly incurious will fail to find some inspiration here.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.