Steak & Salad, Fusion Style

By Johnson, Elaine | Sunset, May 2012 | Go to article overview

Steak & Salad, Fusion Style


Johnson, Elaine, Sunset


From two rising Seattle chefs, a Korean American twist on a classic menu BY ELAINE JOHNSON

SEATTLE HAS FLIPPED for the inventive cooking of Rachel Yang and Seif Chirchi. Their two restaurants, Joule and Revel, blend the big flavors Rachel grew u p with in Korea - spicy, salty, tart, fermented, and sweet - with touches from Seif 's Chicago mac-'n'-cheese upbringing, plus classic French technique. (They met while cooking for Alain Ducasse in New York and later got married.) The result is a free-thinking style that's not quite Korean, not quite American, and surprisingly easy to pull off at home.

MENU

Cucumber, soju, and blueberry shrub cocktail

Zucchini and Thai basil pancakes

Summer radish salad with sweet chili vinaigrette

Short rib "steaks" with grilled kimchi

Ginger shaved ice with apricots and sweetened condensed milk

Cucumber, soju, and blueberry shrub cocktail

SERVES 4 | 10 MINUTES, PLUS ABOUT 4 HOURS TO COOL AND CHILL

Refreshing vinegar-based drinks are very popular in Korea - and, curiously, are a lot like "shrubs," the vinegar-spiked fruit drinks of colonial America. Both inspired this sweet-tart cocktail. It's good as a mocktail too, with club soda instead of soju.

¼ cup unseasoned rice vinegar

¼ cup sugar

1 cup blueberries

12 English cucumber sticks (about 3 in. long)

2 cups (about 500 ml.) chilled Korean soju or Japanese shochu (see "3 Korean Essentials," at far right)

Club soda (optional)

1. Make blueberry shrub: Bring vinegar, sugar, and V2 cup water to a boil in a small saucepan. Stir in berries. Let cool, then chill airtight at least 4 hours and up to !week.

2. Fill 4 tall glasses one-third full with ice; , arrange cucumber sticks in them. Pour Vi cup soju into each, followed by Va cup shrub (liquid and fruit). Taste, then add more shrub and a splash of club soda if you like.

PER SERVING 343 CAL., 0.3% (l.l CAL.) FROM FAT; 0.3 G PROTEIN; 0.1 G FAT (O G SAT.); 29 G CARBO (0.9 G FIBER); 1.2 MG SODIUM; O MG CHOL.

Zucchini and Thai basii pancakes

SERVES 4 TO 6 | 30 MINUTES

Served at Revel in summer, these Koreanstyle pancakes are moist inside and crispy at the edges, like latkes. You'll need an 8-in. nonstick frying pan.

1 cup flour

½ tsp. baking soda

About 1 tsp. kosher salt

1 large egg

1 cup coarsely shredded zucchini, drained and squeezed dry in a kitchen towel

2 green onions, sliced on a diagonal

¼ cup Thai basil or regular basil cut into fine shreds, plus small basil sprigs

About ¼ cup canola oil, divided

1. Preheat oven to 250° and set a baking sheet in it. Mix flour, baking soda, and 1 tsp. salt in a medium bowl. Add egg and ¾ cup water and whisk until smooth. Stir in zucchini, onions, and basil shreds.

2. Heat an 8-in. nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat, add 1 tbsp. oil, and swirl. Spoon in one-quarter of batter and quickly spread even. Cook until underside is deep brown, 2 minutes; flip. Add a little oil if pan looks dry; brown second side. Transfer to oven. Make more pancakes the same way.

3. Quarter pancakes, garnish with basil sprigs, and add more salt if you like.

PER SERVING 175 CAL., 53Ü (93 CAL.) FROM FAT; 3.6 G PROTEIN; 10 G FAT (l G SAT.); 17 G CARBO (0.9 G FIBER); 373 MG SODIUM; 35 MG CHOL.

Summer radish salad with sweet chili vinaigrette

SERVES 4 | 25 MINUTES

Rachel and Seif like to play around with all kinds of radishes for this colorful salad. For the thinnest slices, use a mandoline.

½ lb. sugar snap peas

2 tbsp. unseasoned rice vinegar

1 ½ tbsp. Korean chili paste (gochujong; see "3 Korean Essentials," at far right)

1 ½ tsp. sugar

¼ cup canola oil

½ lb. (or 2 small bunches) colorful radishes, such as watermelon*, very thinly sliced

1/3 cup thinly sliced red onion

1 qt. …

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