Archives for category: Salads


We made a fun variation to my childhood favorite 凉面, cold noodles with sesame peanut sauce, substituting the noodles with cucumber. The toasted sesame paste is not tahini sauce. You can get sesame paste at any Chinese grocery store. We recommend Taiwanese brands. Happy cooking!

3 cucumbers, shredded lengthwise
1/2 cup toasted sesame paste
1/4 cup peanut butter
3 cloves garlic
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon good toasted black sesame oil
3 teaspoons vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup warm water
Toasted black sesame seeds

Shred cucumbers lengthwise resembling the shape of noodles.  Wrap in paper towel and place in the refrigerator until ready to use.

In a mixing bowl, stir the sesame paste and peanut butter with 1/4 cup warm water until incorporated and smooth. Season with soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic, sugar and vinegar.

Place sesame peanut sauce on a plate, top with shredded cucumber and sprinkle sesame seeds. Mix and enjoy!

Note: If you like it spicy, drizzle  with hot oil.


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
Kosher salt

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.


2 ripe red tomatoes
10 leaves Italian flat-leaf parsley
1 sheet nori (seaweed)
1 1/2 tablespoons good olive oil
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
Juice of 1/8 lemon
Sea salt

Cut the tomato in quarters. With a small spoon, scoop out the pulp and place them on a dish.

Cut the nori in thin strips. Sprinkle them over the tomato pulp.

Drizzle olive oil and balsamic vinegar over the plate. Place flat-leaf parsley on top, squeeze lemon juice, season with sea salt and serve immediately.


2 cups lobster meat
1/2 cup mayonnaise (we like the Japanese brand Kewpie)
1/2 yellow bell pepper, finely diced
1/2 red bell pepper, finely diced
2 stalks Chinese celery, finely diced
1 avocado, diced
1/3 cup scallion, finely chopped
2 leaves tarragon, finely minced
Juice of a half lemon
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Place the lobster in the water then turn heat down to medium. Cover and cook until lobster is just cooked through, about 10-15 minutes depending on the size of your lobster. For a 5 pound lobster, we cooked it for 12 minutes. Transfer the lobster to the sink to cool. Once the lobster is cooled, use a hammer to crack the shell and remove lobster meat. Cut lobster meat into large chunks.

In a large mixing bowl, mix the mayonnaise with lemon juice, scallion, tarragon, bell peppers and celery. Add salt & pepper to taste. Then carefully fold in the lobster meat and avocado. Serve at room temperature or refrigerate until ready to serve.

*Note: the water you cooked the lobster in can be reduced down to about 1/3. It’s great to use the next day as a shellfish pasta sauce base, lobster or shrimp bisque, for rice dishes, paella or risotto. Happy Cooking!


We see some really great figs around in Shanghai. Near us at the line 1 Hengshan lu exit always stands a fig lady with her basket of ripen figs in the late afternoons. She’s sweet and fair on her price, about 10RMB for 6 figs ($1.50). This is an easy to make recipe. And you’ll have a delicious and healthy salad in no time. Happy Cooking!

2 ripen figs
8 cherry tomatoes
1/2 cup loosely packed radish sprouts
1/4 cup good olive oil
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1/2 shallot, finely minced
Juice of 1/8 lemon
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Cut the tomatoes and figs into quarters. Finely mince the 1/2 shallot. Press the minced shallot with the side of your knife to form kind of a paste. Reserve 1/4 of a fig for the dressing.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the olive oil, rice wine vinegar, shallot, lemon juice and salt & pepper to taste. Squeeze the 1/4 fig into the dressing and whisk until incorporated. This adds a sweetness to the dressing.

Dress the tomatoes, figs and radish sprouts to your liking and serve immediately.

%d bloggers like this: