Tuesday, September 25, 2012

A speedy fast ending hopefully in a feast

For those of my Jewish readers may you have an easy and meaningful fast. I couldn't help but provide some comic relief with some of my favorite ecards about Yom Kippur before repenting for all the naughty things I've done and eaten last year. For those of my non Jewish readers if you are curious about this sacred day we call Yom Kippur please check out this "fact" sheetG'mar Chatima Tov - may you be sealed in the book of life.  
xo Jaime aka The Tomato Snob

Tuna Tartare inspired by Asia de Cuba

Asia de Cuba is one of my all time favorite restaurants. In fact I can still remember my first meal there when I was 18 years old. My mom took me to NY city for my birthday and we ate our way through some of the cities best and trendiest restaurants. Till this day my mom is one of the most serious foodies I know, I guess we now know where I get it from. Anyways Asia de Cuba is fabulous restaurant with locations in NY,  London, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Miami. The food is tapas style with influences from Cuban & Asian cuisine.

This tuna tartare is my take on their famous dish "Tunapica". To make to make the dish a little more heart healthy I serve it in cucumber cups instead of deep fried wantons. Either way the tartare is to die for! If you don't have time to make cucumber cups or fry your own wantons you can serve it up on potato or tarot chips as well.  What's great about serving an appetizer like this is you can prep everything in advance then quickly toss it together right before serving. If you like spice you can add a drizzle of sambal or sriracha to the dressing.

1 - for the dressing add finely chopped chives to the lime juice, soy sauce, sesame oil, grape seed oil, minced garlic & ginger, and a pinch of s & p
2 - finely chop the tuna and refrigerate until you are ready to use it
3 - toast slivered almonds in a pan over medium heat until golden
4 - combine coconut, currants and almonds once they have cooled down 
5 - remove cucumber skin (using a carrot peeler) and divide into 1" pieces, then punch out using a cookie cutter, then wrap in damp paper towel and refrigerate until ready to serve
6 - toss tuna, dressing, & dry mixture together and spoon into cucumber bites. 
7 - garnish with a sliver of green onion or panko bread crumbs 

So grateful for the #twitterlove from the operators at Asia de Cuba, many thanks. Now when can a girl get a calamari salad in Toronto?

Monday, September 17, 2012

Happy New Year 5773

To my Jewish friends and readers I wish you all a sweet and delicious new year. Lots of love, success, health and happiness. xoxo  Jaime aka The Tomato Snob 

I'm enjoying a beautiful fall afternoon with my mama & my totally adorable grandfather, eating drinking and enjoying our time together. 

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Korean Charred Beef & sesame slaw

Yes it's September. I don't know whether to cry or celebrate the fact that fall is here. It seems like the summer swept by in a blink. Like May was only last week and I was celebrating my 30th birthday with family and friends. I'm in a mood today I guess, a mood that can only be lifted with this delicious simple end of summer dinner. It's light and flavorful and will not dissapoint. A while back I had the pleasure of cooking for newlyweds Macy & Stephen. They were a couple cool kids that love their food and wine, needless to say we hit it off emmediatly. I promised them I would post the recipe for their dinner that evening and here it finally is. 

* Macy & Stephen - I actually made a variation or this slaw using a hoisen vinaigrette from the Vietnamese salad roll dipping sauce. It was basically just hoisen sauce, sambal chili, splash of citrus, splash or rice vinegar & sesame oil. I also added julienned peppers & cucumber to the mix. 

1/4 red cabbage - shredded 
1/4 green cabbage - shredded
1 carrot - shredded 
Asian pear - julienned 
1 tbsp minced ginger
2 green onions - thinly sliced
handful of mint - chopped
handful of cilantro - chopped
splash citrus - orange, lemon or lime (or all three) 
splash of rice wine vinegar 
drizzle sesame oil  
pinch s & p 
black sesame seeds - for garnish 

PREP: Chop, shred, mince and toss all ingredients together

FOR THE BEEF: Season beef on each side with salt, then whisk marinade and pour 1/2 on the beef (we used NY strip). Allow marinade to sit for 1 hour  if you have the time. Reserve the rest of the marinade to spoon over the dish once it's finished. 

COOK: In a blazing hot cast iron pan sear beef for two to three mins on each side (for medium rare). Do not move the meat around in the pan, you want a crust to form around the edges to create the char. Touch the beef and if it feels slightly springy remove from heat and place on your cutting board. Allow beef to rest for at least 2 mins before you cut it into slices. *If you have a fan above your stove you will want to put it on before you begin to cook - this dish produces a lot of smoke. 


Saturday, September 1, 2012

Do you love tomatoes as much as this Tomato Snob?

Happy Labor Day weekend! I hope everyone is having a delicious long weekend filled with fresh local fruits & veggies and strong icy cocktails. I just wanted to let you all know about an awesome opportunity to be in the National Post Newspaper in Toronto. Over the summer I've been participating in this program called #gastropost where food lovers get weekly missions, complete them via blog post, instagram, fb, or twitter and possibly get some newspaper love sharing their mission in Saturday's paper. This week I've been asked to host the mission since it's all about tomatoes. I would love if my faithful readers participated and made this the biggest gastropost mission yet. All you have to do is get your submission in by this Thursday morning for the chance to see your story in print. Lets make it happen people! Chow for now...