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While writing my post on How to Host a Sushi Party, I surfed the blogs for a good 30 minutes…

**I have moved!!  Read the rest of this post at my new home** 

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Steamy Kitchen has moved!!

Click here to get recipe on the new site.

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Such a simple pairing….eggplant + miso. But I’m still not happy with the results. The miso mixture was way too salty. I’ll share the mistakes I made.

Mistake #1
I made this while on an empty, growling stomach

Mistake #2
I ran out of wine to drink, therefore in a foul mood

Mistake #3
I doubted Master Nobu Matsuhisa‘s recipe

Ahhhh….so you see, I was a bad grasshoppa.

I started trying to get fancy- adding rice wine vinegar and grated ginger. What I should have done was just stick with Nobu’s original recipe for “Nobu Style Saikyo Sweet Miso” instead of wandering off aimlessly on my own.

I should have caught the big glaring clue right in front of me.

If Nobu’s recipe was so incredibly SIMPLE. Then the dish is meant to be SIMPLE.

Now, if I had gotten inspiration from another cook, like, oh…lets say Sandra Lee, and it was simple, then enhancing the recipe would have been a good idea. Because her recipe would have probably started with a can of refried beans.

But come on, why doubt Nobu? Please don’t tell him, ok? I’m sure he’d whack me in the head with a floppy eggplant.

Here’s what I should have done:

Nobu-Style Saikyo Sweet Miso
from his book, Nobu Now

makes 2 cups

3 1/2 fluid ounces Japanese sake
3 1/2 fluid ounces mirin
10 1/2 ounces white miso paste
5 1/4 ounces granulated sugar

1. Put sake and mirin in pot and heat. Bring to boil and allow alcohol to evaporate off.

2. Over medium heat, add the white miso paste, a little at a time. Blend in with a wooden spatula.

3. When you have added all the white miso paste and the mixture is smooth, turn the heat up to high, and add the sugar in two or three lots. Make sure it does not burn.

4. Sitre the mixture until the sugar has compelte dissolved. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Stored in refrigerator, it lasts several weeks. This recipe makes enough for this eggplant recipe PLUS you could make this.

If you only want to make enough for the eggplant dish, then I divide the recipe to only yield 1/2 cup.

Do your own math. Still out of wine. Still in foul mood.

Japanese Eggplant with Nobu’s Miso
serves 4 as side dish

4 Japanese eggplants, halved lengthwise (or 1-2 large globes, cut into 1″ slices – enough for 2 pieces each person)
1/2 cup of Nobu’s miso mix above
2 tablespoons canola oil

Preheat oven – broiler on HIGH, rack 6 inches from top

1. Brush eggplant slices with a little canola oil, place on baking sheet. Immediately put in oven and broil for 4-5 minutes, until eggplant soft and the tops are golden. Remove from oven.

2. Spoon miso mixure on the eggplant halves. Use a brush to spread the miso evenly on surface. Return to broiler. Broil 2-3 minutes until the miso is bubbly and starting to brown, about 2 minutes. But watch the oven – timing may vary based on your oven. Don’t burn the eggplant!

Garnish with thinly sliced green onions (adds great color and texture)

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Best Dressed Salad

If my Salad was going to an Oscar Party (or any other red-carpet event), this is what she would wear.   Slimming, sophisticated, beautiful lines, not-too-much-cleavage, subtle yet elegant.

Right by my house is an organic produce stand called Jessica’s Organic Farm.  They are only open Fridays and Saturdays, but they grow and sell some of the freshest organic produce I have ever tasted.  Last week, I came home with a head of lettuce 12″ wide, sweet & silky mangos, zucchini , sugar snap peas and bright red cherry tomatoes.  I cut the zucchini into spaghetti-like strands…isn’t it beautiful?

Best Dressed Salad

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Skirt Steak


I published this same article that was in The Observer newspaper on the Well Fed Network as well. The article’s headline was supposed to say “Skirt Steak” and not “Flank Steak.” Skirt Steak: The Butcher’s Best Kept Secret…..(read at Wellfed.net)

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Xiao Lung Bao

**I’ve moved!!  Read the rest of this post at my new home**

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Baby Eggplant

Look what I found at the market yesterday! These were so darn cute, about 4 inches in length – I just had to take some of these bright, shiny baby aubergines home with me. Eggplant season generally starts in June, but one of the perks of living in Florida is that we get produce a little earlier in season due to the warmer weather.

The babies were practically begging to be roasted as an appetizer. I just so happened to have a jar of Sicilian Caponata, which is a relish of chopped eggplant, tomatoes, capers and olives, all magically blended into a sauce perfect for pastas, quick bruschetta, or even eating straight out of the jar (me, guilty).

Roasted baby eggplant

I simply sliced the baby eggplants in half lengthwise, put them on a roasting pan, drizzled olive oil and in the oven at 375 degrees. 10 minutes later, I checked on them. Perfect timing! I then brushed a little more olive oil on top and set the broiler on high for 2 minutes to get a little more carmelization on the top. Serve a quick sprinkling of sea salt, a spoonful of Caponata, chopped parsley and freshly grated Pecorino Romano.

The eggplant is dreamy, delicate and sweet. One bite and the velvety flesh just melts into your mouth. Since they haven’t matured, they do not have any of the bitterness that the adult variety contains. No need to salt to extract the bitter compounds.

These babies were just the perfect size for a finger food. Their indigo skins looked so perfect on a white platter! Can you imagine serving these cute things wearing the perfect hostess apron?! (HUSBAND click on this link)

Roasted baby eggplant

You don’t have Caponata? Try these toppings:

-Pesto sauce with chopped parsley, roasted pinenuts and shaved parmesan

-Chunky marinara sauce with chopped basil

-Slices of roasted bell peppers and good olives

-Diced tomatoes with a garlicy Tzaziki sauce. Top with chopped, fresh dill

-Crispy fried basil leaves (deep fry the leaves)

-Whipped mashed potato mixed with curry powder

Do you have any other topping suggestions?

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