Yam Som O in is a spicy Thai pomelo salad. Pomelo is a large tropical grapefruit like citrus fruit native to South East Asia. The salad includes shrimp, toasted coconut, shallots, peanuts, tossed together with a spicy chili-coconut lime dressing.
While I love the traditional Thai yam som o (click here) the conundrum is finding pomelo if you do not live in the tropics. That said I have found ruby red grapefruit to be an ideal stand in for the pomelo in an equally zesty Yam Som O.
The recipe that follows otherwise adheres to the traditional ingredients of this salad which will require gathering together some Thai ingredients that you may not have on hand as well as preparing a roasted Thai chili paste which I promise will fill l your kitsch with a â€œbreathtakingâ€ aroma of an authentic Thai kitchen. This chilli paste can be prepared in advance and refrigerated.
Thai roasted chili paste
- 3 tablespoons oil
- 3 tablespoons minced shallots
- 3 tablespoons minced garlic
- 3 tablespoons dried red birdâ€™s eye chills, seeds removed and finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon shrimp paste
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- 2 teaspoons palm sugar or light brown sugar
Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a small saute pan set over medium heat. When hot add the shallots. Saute until wilted. Add the garlic and saute until the shallots and-garlic are golden. Then Add the chills and saute until softened.
Transfer the contents of the pan to mortar, or small processor and set the pan aside. Add the shrimp paste, fish sauce, and sugar and pound or process the mixture until emulsified.
Add dd the remaining tablespoon of oil to the pan. When the oil is hot add the chili mixture and saute for several minutes until reduced to a paste like consistency.
Allow the mixture to cool and then transfer it to a jar. Bets used while fresh, or refrigerate for up to a month or so.
The dressing may also be prepared ahead and refrigerated.
- Â½ cup coconut milk
- 2 teaspoons palm sugar (or light brown sugar)
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 2 tablespoons roasted chili paste
Pour the coconut milk into a small sauce pan and bring to a low boil. Add the palm sugar and swirl the pan until dissolved. Add the fish sauce and lime juice and swirl to combine. Then add the roasted chili paste and stir until it is incorporated. Reduce he heat to a low simmer and cook for10 minutes. Set aside to cool and then store in a jar with lid and refrigerate.
Thai Yam Som Oo saladÂ Â Â Serves two
- 2 cups precooked and de veined small shrimp that has been well chilled
- 2 tablespoons shallots tht have been thinly sliced lengthwise
- 2 tablespoons garlic that hat has bee thinly sliced lengthwise
- 4 tablespoons toasted shredded coconut
- 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh red chills
- 2 cups fresh ruby red grapefruit sections
- 2 tablespoons chopped roasted peanuts
- 2 tablespoons fresh coriander leaves
- 2 iceberg lettuce cups for lining the individual serving bowls
Place the chilled shrimp in a non reactive salad bawl. Scatter the sliced shallots and sliced garlic over the shrimp. Scatter three quarters of the toasted coconut and chopped fresh red chilies over the contents of the bowl. Pour some dressing over all and toss, adding more dressing as needed until the salad is evenly dressed.
At this point the salad may be refrigerated briefly while you prepare for serving.
Divide the salad into two individual serving bowls lined with iceberg lettuce. Tuck ruby red grapefruit sections into the salads generously. Spoon a little more dressing over the salads if needed. Sprinkle toasted peanuts and coconut over the salads. Add the remaining grapefruit on top of the salads and dust with a few pinches of peanuts a toasted coconut and garnish with fresh coriander leaves or zesty sprouts and serve.
There are many raspberry vine gars out there but making your own is very easy and a nice way to bottle a taste of summer that will brighten up salads this winter.
I have been using Julee Rosso and Sheila Lukins raspberry vinaigrette recipe from their Silver Palate Cookbook since it was published in 1982. It is a simple master recipe that is open to endless variations for the occasion at hand.
- 8.5 ounces fresh raspberries
- 12 fluid ounces white wine vinegar
Rinse the fresh raspberries and put them in a large jar. Pour the vinegar into t jar and seal with the lid. Place in the refrigerator for 14 days or longer.
Line a large fine mesh strainer with a double layer of cheesecloth set over a large mixing bowl. Pour the contents of the jar into the lined strainer and using a silicone spatula press the raspberries to extract all the liquid from the berries. Discard the crushed berries.
Pour the raspberry vinegar into a sterilized jar or decanter and let it settle until it comes to room temperature. Seal the jar or decanter and store in a dark place for up to six or moor months.
Silver Palate Raspberry Vinaigrette
Makes Â¾ cup
- Â 1/2cup extra virgin olive oil
- Â¼ cup raspberry vinegar
- Â½ teaspoon sea salt or to taste
- Â¼ teaspoon freshly ground pink or white peppercorns
- 1 tablespoon sour cream
Place all the ingredients in a jar and sake vigorously until the vinaigrette emulsifies.
Use at once or refrigerate.
Additions and substitutions you may want to try include
- 1 tablespoon minced shallots
- 1 tablespoon full fat Greek Yogurt in lieu of the sour cream
- 1 teaspoon honey for a hint of sweetness.
August always delivers an overabundance of zucchini which, for a cook, calls for a little creativity if you want to transform the ordinary into something extraordinary. That may sound like a tall order, but here is a quick and easy zucchini recipe that delivers a bright refreshing zucchini main course for a late summer supper.
Meyer lemons may be unfamiliar, but Iâ€™m here to make their case with the hope that you will give them a try.
Meyer lemons are a centuries old Chinese hybrid of citron, the mother of all citrus fruits, pomelo, and the mandarin orange. Meyer lemons are less acidic than a true lemon with a hint of mandarin and scent of citron.
Nicolas Meyer, an American horticulturist, developed the Meyer lemon in 1908 and this isÂ the variety you will find here in the US. Alice Waters and her restaurant Chez Panisse in Berkeley popularized California cooking and introduced Meyer lemons to American home cooks In the early â€˜70s.
Meyer lemons are now widely available and generally identified by a softer paler yellow skin with a sweet citrus scent. If you live in California or Florida where Meyer lemons are commerciallyÂ grown you are likely to encounter various varieties and sizes. I have include a photo of two varieties Iâ€™ve found in my local farmers market a here in Hawaii.
For the recipe that follows you may of course use true lemons, but the Meyer lemons are well worth seeking out. I have found them at Whole Foods as well as and various specialty produce purveyors on the mainland as well.
Zesty Sauteed Zucchini with Meyer Lemons and Garlic
Equipment: a large stainless skillet with lid.
- 2 medium green or yellow zucchini, ends trimmed, and sliced into paper thin rounds
- 3 Meyer lemons, trimmed and sliced into paper thin rounds, seeds removed and discarded
- 1 medium brown onion, peeled, thinly sliced and quartered
- 3 plump garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced lengthwise
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/3 cup dry white wine
- flaked sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- fresh cilantro leaves
- wedges of Meyer lemons
Prep all the ingredients and set them out on a platter.
Set the skillet over medium heat. Add the butter and swirl the pan until melted. Add the olive oil and swirl to combine.
Add the onions and saute until they begin to wilt. Add the garlic and saute for 1 minute.
Add the lemon slices and saute briefly and then add the zucchini. Using bamboo or silicone spatula begin turning the ingredients continuously until they begin to color ever so slightly. Add 1/4 cup water and continue sauteing until the water has evaporated.
Add the wine and saute for a few minutes until the wine has parochially evaporated. Season with salt and pepper and toss to combine.
Lower the heat and cover the pan with the lid and simmer for 2 or 3 minutes. The zucchini and lemons should have a slight golden color around the edges.
Serving: Transfer to individual shallow pasta plates. Garnish with cilantro leaves and lemon wedges and serve.
I like serving this sauteed zucchini with meyer lemons with small baked mottoes topped with a good splash of olive oil, flaked sea salt, and dollops of G reek yogurt.
This, to me, a perfect light summer supper!
For some reason I keep returning to potato salads this summer. Chilled meals just make more sense. I like to get whatever has to be cooked out of the way in the morning so Iâ€™m home free when evening rolls around and I have supper on the table pronto!
Planning summer meals is so easy with the abundance of all the fresh herbs and salad greens available in local farmers markets. Herbs add that taste of summer to marinades, dressings and, of course, pesto! A chilled basil pesto dressing turns a potato salad into the main attraction on the table.
And donâ€™t stop there. Make hay while it shines and squirrel away batches of pesto in your freezer. There is nothing like bringing the taste of summer to the table in the dead of winter!
A Summery Pesto Potato Salad with watercress
Plan to cook the potatoes several hours before making the potato salad. The potatoes must be well chilled before making the salad.
- 2 pounds of potatoes, peeled and cut into a bite size wedges
- water to cover
- sea salt
Put the cut potatoes in a large pot and add water to cover. Add salt and bring to a low boil. Cook until the potatoes are al dente. Gently pour the potatoes into a large colander and drain well. Once cool, transfer the potatoes to a large bowl, cover with cling film, and put them in the fridge to chill for several hours.
- 3 cups chopped fresh sweet Italian basil leaves
- 2 plump garlic cloves, peeled and minced
- juice of 1 lemon
- Â½ to Â¾ cup good quality extra virgin olive oil
- Â½ teaspoon sea salt
- Â½ cup pine nuts, macadamia nuts. or cashew nuts, chopped
- Â¾ cup finely grated Parmigiana cheese
- freshly ground black pepper
- cold water if needed
Place the chopped basil, minced garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, and salt in a food processor, blender, or a bowl if using an immersion blender. Blend until emulsified.
Add the nuts and blend until smooth. Add the parmigiana and black pepper and pulse until combined.
Taste the pesto and add salt if needed. If the pesto seems a little thick add a little olive oil or
cold water and pulse until the pesto is the consistency you prefer.
Basil Pesto Dressing
- 1 cup basil pesto
- 1 tablespoon Grey Poupon mustard
- Â¼ cup mayonnaise
- Â¼ cup fullÂ fat Greek yogurt
combine all the dressing ingredients in a bowl and stir the dressing by hand until well combined. cover and refrigerate.
Refrigerator freeze the reaming pesto for later use.
Basil Pesto Potato Salad
- 3/4 cup diced sweet onion
- 1 cup diced celery
- precooked diced potatoes
- basil pesto dressing
- fresh watercress
Place the onions, celery, and potatoes in a large bowl. Toss the ingredients using your hands and set aside, or refrigerate until you are ready to assemble the salad.
Add generous dollops of the dressing to the salad and toss gently using large wooden salad spoons.
Line a large serving bowl or platter with fresh watercress Top with the potato salad and chill the salad until the very last minute before serving!