I’ve spent a lot of time in Asia over the years and in that time I have definitely developed a taste for Asian foods. I love Asian food because it is generally packed with flavour, and raw whole foods. The food I eat in Asia is fresh, no preservatives. Something I cannot say for the Asian food served in restaurants in North America.
When it comes to food I am a big believer in fresh, organic, and whole foods. I want dishes that are made with locally grown ingredients, not frozen or chemically processed ones. As hard as that may be to find at times. Of course the best solution to that is to simply make my favourite dishes at home. That way I know what I’m eating, and I can play around with the flavours as well.
Here are some of my favourite Asian-inspired recipes that I’ve come across online – you may want to eat before you continue reading.
Potstickers (or dumplings) are generally made with ground pork and served with XO sauce. Potstickers, Dim Sum, Gyoza, they are all pretty much the same thing – and I absolutely love eating them whenever I can find them. I recently found a recipe by Alton Brown that is worth a go. Simple and delicious, even though he has some unexpected ingredients listed!
Thai Beef & Mango Salad
There are some damn good Asian-inspired salads floating around the internets, and being served all over Asia. In fact just thinking about Asian salads is making my mouth water and my tummy grumble. As with all Asian dishes, the salads are packed with flavours, especially Thai salads. I love the marriage of sweet and sour, which is why I’m including this delicious recipe by Donal Skehan. Yumgasm!!
Pho is a Vietnamese soup, and something that everyone should try at least once in their lifetime. I recommend trying the soup at a restaurant first, then if you fall in love with it, check out Steamy Kitchen’s recipe and try making it yourself at home. Pho, unlike some soups, is a little more involved, but it’s important that you do not cut corners! Cutting corners means you’re screwing around with the flavour and if you want proper Pho, you need to do it right!
If you’ve never had sushi, you may be living under a rock, or afraid that raw fish will kill you. Guess what? It is highly unlikely that you’ll die from eating sushi. Really! Personally I am a bit picky when it comes to sushi as I’m a flavour nut, but texture and visual appeal play a big rolls as well, which is why I love, love, LOVE this Dragon Roll recipe by Just One Cookbook. Sure, it takes some time to build, but hot damn is it worth the effort!
Burmese Noodle Bowl
This hearty soup recipe by Nukavi was featured on Food52 and should be on your list for winter soups this year – and with the egg, nooddles, chicken, and chili powder in the recipe this is a great Asian-inspired soup for when you’re sick. Who needs canned chicken noodle soup?! Not me!!
Thai Clam Chowder
I’m just going to come out and say it, Jen from Tartine and Apron Strings is an f-ing genius!! I never would have thought to do a Asian American fusion recipe with New England Clam Chowder and Thai spices. Never. OMG this chowder is TO DIE FOR! A definite must on my menu lists for chilly days – or when I’m craving seafood with a little kick to it!
Chinese Style Crispy Pork Belly
One of my favourite dishes in Asia (yes, there are a few) is crispy pork belly with rice. It’s not necessarily a healthy dish, but OMG is is utterly delicious, especially if you add a little chili sauce in the mix. Yummers! I recently found this recipe by The Hungry Giant which breaks things down rather nicely. From this one recipe you can branch off and try various things like blanching in apple cider or juice instead of water. Nom nom nom.
Balinese Chicken Lawar
Say hello to the future party in your mouth. No, really! This recipe by Yvonne Ruperti on Serious Eats is packed with some of my favourite flavours: lemongrass, turmeric, thai green chilies. I think I’m going to have a Yumgasm right now.
Ooooo that was good.
This Korean dish is a must for anyone who likes Asian food. There are so many ways you can mix this up. I’ve had bibimbap with candied yams (OMG that was amazing), and kimchie. Really, anything goes when it comes to Bibimbap. While there are TONS of recipes floating around, I chose this one by Use Real Butter because 1.)I love her website name and 2.) the recipe is fairly straight forward. Mmmm…. so hungry now.
This is my ALL TIME FAVOURITE CURRY dish. Whenever I’m in Chiang Mai, Thailand I can be found at a little place called Lemon Tree about once a week eating Panang Kai, which is a red chicken curry dish. This curry is a little spicy, but what I love about it is the Thai basil and kaffir lime flavours. SO GOOD! This is one dish that I love to make on my own as well and thankfully the folks at Travel in Asia have a fairly good recipe for it.
photos: Food Network, Donal Skehan, Steamy Kitchen, Just One Cookbook, Food 52, Tartine & Apron Strings, The Hungry Giant, Serious Eats, Use Real Butter, Travel in Asia