These crunchy sugar snap peas tossed with sesame seeds and lemon zest are simple, delicious and make a great side to any main dish. We serve them with anything from roast beef, pan seared salmon, sandwiches to pasta salads. Or you can make it alone and snack away!
1 pound sugar snap peas
2 tablespoons good olive oil
1/2 tablespoon black sesame seeds
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Zest of 1/2 lemon
Wash the sugar snap peas, tear off stem ends and strings. Pad dry.
In a medium mixing bowl, toss the sugar snap peas with olive oil, sesame seeds, lemon juice and lemon zest. Season with kosher salt.
Serve at room temperature or refrigerate for later.
One of our all-time favorite comfort foods is, the burger! And this time, the variation is brown beech mushroom and Swiss. It’s easy, fun to make and taste better than any burger joint in Shanghai. Brown beech mushrooms have a slightly crunchy texture and nutty flavor, pairs perfectly with juicy beef and savory fried onions. With roasted garlic aioli served on the side.
2 Australian ground beef patties
3-4 slices ripe tomato
2 slices Swiss cheese
1 cluster brown beech mushrooms
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 red onion, sliced
1/4 cup rice flour
1 small bunch arugula
2 sesame buns
Canola oil for frying
Freshly ground black pepper
Slice the onions, dust them in rice flour and shake off excess. Heat canola oil in a medium pot. Deep fry the onion slices until golden brown. Pull the fried onions and drain on paper towel.
In a saute pan, saute the mushrooms with garlic, season with salt and pepper and set aside.
Season beef patties with salt and pepper on both sides. In a medium saute pan, heat a little bit of canola oil and cook the beef patties to desired temperature. We like our burgers medium-rare on the rare side, about 3 minutes on each side. After flipping the burgers over, top each patty with a slice of Swiss cheese and finish the cooking. Serve immediately on toasted and buttered sesame buns. Top with fresh sliced tomato, arugula, fried onions and sauteed mushrooms.
Roasted Garlic Aioli:
2 egg yolks
1 bulb garlic
1/2 cup good olive oil
1 cup canola oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon ancho chili powder
Freshly ground black pepper
Wrap the garlic bulb in aluminum foil. Bake the package in the oven for about 35 minutes until garlic is soft.
Squeeze about 1/2 bulb of roasted garlic (add more if you’d like) into a blender. Add all other ingredients in the blender except the oil. Start the blender, slowly drizzle in the olive oil and canola oil. Blend until smooth and fluffy. Can be stored up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator.
Jesse, Matt, Brendan and Henry cooked at the Bubba’s 6th annual chili cook-off in Shanghai this year. It was an all day event from 7:00am to 7:00pm. One of our friends flew in the night before from Texas and brought us genuine Texas dried chilies. In this homemade chili mix, there were chipotles, Mexican chili, ancho chili, smoked poblanos, cayenne pepper, Mexican oregano and roasted cumin.
Jesse & Matt’s Chili Ingredients:
New York strip, cubed
Homemade chili powders
Homemade beef stock
Homemade chicken stock
The amount of each ingredient can be adjusted to your own liking. Great winning chilies always have 2 to 3 dumps (dumps being chili powder mixture going in at different times within the cooking cycle). The longer it cooks, the better it tastes. That’s why you have to use a dense piece of beef like a sirloin or tri tip. Jesse & Matt smoked part of the strip to add a great smoky flavor to the chili. For the homemade beef stock, Jesse browned beef bones, beef short ribs and aromatics then slowly simmered for hours.
Matt, Jesse and Henry behind their Joe Dirt themed chili booth.