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Simply Ming: Easy Techniques for East-Meets-West Meals

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Overview

As the chef and owner of the acclaimed Blue Ginger restaurant in Wellesley, Massachusetts, and an Emmy award-winning television personality, Ming Tsai has become the standard-bearer of East-West cuisine, the innovative blending of Eastern flavors and techniques with Western ingredients and presentations.

Now, in Simply Ming, he presents a breakthrough technique for bringing East-West flair to everyday cooking, making it possible to transform a handful of fresh ingredients into a...

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Overview

As the chef and owner of the acclaimed Blue Ginger restaurant in Wellesley, Massachusetts, and an Emmy award-winning television personality, Ming Tsai has become the standard-bearer of East-West cuisine, the innovative blending of Eastern flavors and techniques with Western ingredients and presentations.

Now, in Simply Ming, he presents a breakthrough technique for bringing East-West flair to everyday cooking, making it possible to transform a handful of fresh ingredients into a delicious meal in a matter of minutes. The genius of Simply Ming is a versatile array of master recipes—intensely flavored sauces, pestos, salsas, dressings, rubs, and more that eliminate much of the last-minute prep work. So sophisticated dishes such as Tea-Rubbed Salmon with Steamed Scallion-Lemon Rice, Grilled Miso-Citrus Scallop Lollipops, and Green Peppercorn Beef Tenderloin with Vinegar-Glazed Leeks can be on the table in less than 30 minutes.

Even casual dishes such as spaghetti, burgers, fried calamari, and chicken wings get a boost of East-West excitement in Ming’s creative hands, becoming Asian Pesto Turkey Spaghetti, Salmon Burger with Tomato-Kaffir Lime Salsa, Blue Ginger Crispy Calamari, and Soy-Dijon Chicken Wings. This is food that is simple enough to serve on a weeknight, but special enough to share with guests. And desserts get the Simply Ming treatment, too, with tempting ways to transform basic shortbread dough, chocolate ganache, and crème anglaise into a range of show-stopping finales.

Filled with color photographs that motivate and inspire, beverage suggestions to complement each dish, and helpful tips for cooking with unfamiliar ingredients, Simply Ming makes the excitement and innovation of East-West cooking easily accessible to all home cooks.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Tsai, the irrepressible host of the Food Network's East Meets West and chef of Boston's Blue Ginger restaurant, is doing things differently on this print venture. Rather than embarking on a parade of salads, soups followed by vegetable, proteins and starches, he organizes this book by dominant flavors, like Hoisin-Lime Sauce, Roasted Pepper-Lemongrass Sambal and Soy-Dijon Marinade. Besides making the book easier to use (no more flipping around looking for sub-recipes), the sauce-based structure makes the most daunting part of the cooking easy to prepare ahead of time. Big flavors and easy prep-as in Roasted Miso-Citrus Chicken, Scallion-Crusted Cod with Mango Salsa, and Broiled Stuffed Eggplant with Black Pepper-Garlic Sauce-are essential to the Ming method. This isn't virtuoso cooking or high-concept pan-Asian like Patricia Yeo's. But Tsai (Blue Ginger) is a culinary magpie who creates the oddest juxtapositions with the fewest ingredients: Carrot-Chipotle Syrup, Kimchee "Choucroute" with Seared Dijon Halibut, Tea-rubbed Salmon with Country Mash, Potato Pancakes with Apple-Scallion Cream. Cultural borrowing on this order of magnitude can be intimidating for the home cook, which may be why the chef has concentrated the considerable force of his winning personality on making the recipes accessible. His cuisine may not win converts among the fusion-phobic, but only the hopelessly incurious will fail to find some inspiration here. (Nov.) Forecast: The timing of this title is no accident; Simply Ming will soon be airing on public television. Readers are likely to be charmed. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Chef/owner of the well-known Blue Ginger restaurant outside of Boston, Ming also hosted what became one of the most popular series on the Food Network, East Meets West, and he is soon to be the star of a new PBS show, also called Simply Ming. In his appealing second cookbook, again with coauthor Boehm, he has adapted the flavors of his restaurant fare for home cooks, with a selection of easily prepared "flavor bases" that can be used for a variety of dishes: Roasted Pepper-Lemongrass Sambal, for example, inspires Grilled Portobello Sandwiches, Braised Chicken with Mushrooms, and Orzo with Sausage. There are quick-and-easy suggestions for other dishes based on each of these flavored oils, salsas, marinades, and the like. Headnotes are helpful and engaging, and most recipes include "Ming's Tips," along with wine suggestions. Recommended for most collections. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780609610671
  • Publisher: Crown Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 10/28/2003
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 7.70 (w) x 10.40 (h) x 0.85 (d)

Meet the Author

MING TSAI was named Best Chef of the Northeast by the James Beard Foundation in 2002. He has been a mainstay on the Food Network as the host of East Meets West, for which he won an Emmy, and with WBGH he is producing and hosting a new series, Simply Ming, on public television. He is the author of Blue Ginger (with Arthur Boehm) and has created food products and cookware under both the Ming East-West and Blue Ginger labels. He and his wife live in Massachusetts with their two sons. For more information, visit his website at www.ming.com.

ARTHUR BOEHM writes about food for a number of national publications and is co-author of the Modern Seafood Cook, The Empire Kosher Cookbook, and Blue Ginger: East Meets West Cooking with Ming Tsai. He lives in New York City.

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Read an Excerpt

HOISIN-ROASTED DUCK WITH SWEET POTATOES

Here's my easy version of the famed Peking Duck, a delicious dish that nonetheless takes lifetimes to prepare. This one-pot variation, which features sweet potatoes (wonderful with the duck), is much, much simpler to make, and you still get crispy skin, savory meat, and the hoisin-sauce "accompaniment," not to mention deliciously roasted sweets that have absorbed the tasty duck drippings.

Serves 3 to 4

• One 5-to-6 pound duck, rinsed and dried, and visible fat removed
• Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
• 1 1/2 cups Hoisin-Lime Sauce (page 46)
• 1/2 cup red wine
• 2 large onions, cut into 1/4-inch slices
• 4 large sweet potatoes, washed and cut into 6 to 8 wedges each

1. Season the duck inside and out with salt and pepper. In a medium bowl, combine the Hoisin-Lime Sauce and the wine. Rub the duck generously with the mixture inside and out, and marinate in the mixture, refrigerated, for at least 2 hours and up to overnight.

2. Place a roasting pan in the oven and preheat the oven to 375 degrees Farenheit.

3. Combine the onions and potatoes in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper, and toss.

4. Open the oven and carefully spray the roasting pan with nonstick cooking spray. Place one potato wedge in the pan. The potato should sizzle; if not, remove it and continue to heat the pan. When the pan is very hot, add the potato mixture to the pan and place the duck on top, breast side up. Turn the pan back to front and roast until the duck is brown, 35 to 40 minutes. Tent the duck with foil and continue to roast until the duck is cooked through, or the legs are easily moved, 30 to 35 minutes more. Transfer the duck to a cutting board and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes.

5. Using a flat spatula, loosen the potato mixture from the pan and transfer to the center of a platter. Place the whole duck on the potatoes, breast side up, and carve at table. You may also carve the duck before serving, separating the leg-thighs from the wings, and slicing the breast.

-----

MASTER RECIPE: HOISIN-LIME SAUCE

If you're like most people, your first encounter with hoisin sauce involved the Chinese dish mu shu pork, in which the sauce serves as a dipper for meat-enclosed pancakes. Used this way (and even in dishes), this bean-paste ingredient is too sweet, I find. That's why I came up with this sprightly lime-flavored version. The acidic kick of the lime bounces off the sauce's sweetness to create a delicious "new" hoisin. I've also added aromatics to the sauce to ensure it's well rounded—and versatile.

Makes about 2 cups
Lasts 2 weeks, refrigerated

• 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons grapeseed or canola oil
• 2 tablespoons minced garlic
• 1 tablespoon peeled and minced fresh ginger
• 2 cups hoisin sauce
• 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
• Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. Heat a wok or large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the 2 tablespoons of oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add the garlic and ginger and sauté until soft, about 2 minutes. Add the hoisin sauce and stir to prevent burning. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute, then add the lime juice.

2. Transfer the mixture to a blender and blend, drizzling in the 1/2 cup oil. Season with salt and pepper. Cool thoroughly and use or store.

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First Chapter

HOISIN-ROASTED DUCK WITH SWEET POTATOES

Here's my easy version of the famed Peking Duck, a delicious dish that nonetheless takes lifetimes to prepare. This one-pot variation, which features sweet potatoes (wonderful with the duck), is much, much simpler to make, and you still get crispy skin, savory meat, and the hoisin-sauce "accompaniment," not to mention deliciously roasted sweets that have absorbed the tasty duck drippings.

Serves 3 to 4

• One 5-to-6 pound duck, rinsed and dried, and visible fat removed
• Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
• 1 1/2 cups Hoisin-Lime Sauce (page 46)
• 1/2 cup red wine
• 2 large onions, cut into 1/4-inch slices
• 4 large sweet potatoes, washed and cut into 6 to 8 wedges each

1.
Season the duck inside and out with salt and pepper. In a medium bowl, combine the Hoisin-Lime Sauce and the wine. Rub the duck generously with the mixture inside and out, and marinate in the mixture, refrigerated, for at least 2 hours and up to overnight.

2. Place a roasting pan in the oven and preheat the oven to 375 degrees Farenheit.

3. Combine the onions and potatoes in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper, and toss.

4. Open the oven and carefully spray the roasting pan with nonstick cooking spray. Place one potato wedge in the pan. The potato should sizzle; if not, remove it and continue to heat the pan. When the pan is very hot, add the potato mixture to the pan and place the duck on top, breast side up. Turn the pan back to front and roast until the duck is brown, 35 to 40 minutes. Tent the duck with foil andcontinue to roast until the duck is cooked through, or the legs are easily moved, 30 to 35 minutes more. Transfer the duck to a cutting board and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes.

5. Using a flat spatula, loosen the potato mixture from the pan and transfer to the center of a platter. Place the whole duck on the potatoes, breast side up, and carve at table. You may also carve the duck before serving, separating the leg-thighs from the wings, and slicing the breast.

-----

MASTER RECIPE: HOISIN-LIME SAUCE

If you're like most people, your first encounter with hoisin sauce involved the Chinese dish mu shu pork, in which the sauce serves as a dipper for meat-enclosed pancakes. Used this way (and even in dishes), this bean-paste ingredient is too sweet, I find. That's why I came up with this sprightly lime-flavored version. The acidic kick of the lime bounces off the sauce's sweetness to create a delicious "new" hoisin. I've also added aromatics to the sauce to ensure it's well rounded—and versatile.

Makes about 2 cups
Lasts 2 weeks, refrigerated

• 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons grapeseed or canola oil
• 2 tablespoons minced garlic
• 1 tablespoon peeled and minced fresh ginger
• 2 cups hoisin sauce
• 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
• Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1.
Heat a wok or large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the 2 tablespoons of oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add the garlic and ginger and sauté until soft, about 2 minutes. Add the hoisin sauce and stir to prevent burning. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute, then add the lime juice.

2. Transfer the mixture to a blender and blend, drizzling in the 1/2 cup oil. Season with salt and pepper. Cool thoroughly and use or store.
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2008

    A reviewer

    This book is well laid out & easy to follow. The recipes are simple but explode with flavor. I also think the food is healthy eating. A great way to impress guests with ease. Ming's system revolves around multiple master recipe/sauce/chutney with multiple recipes following each one. It really teaches you the possibilities and potential for the creativity in the kitchen. I bought this as a gift for someone who is getting excited about cooking for the first time.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 19, 2003

    Wow! They're fun, easy and delicious.

    Ming's master sauces are wonderful bases for different dishes. His Thai-lime dipping sauce makes a great scallop ceviche or fried calamari, then transforms into a tasty salad dressing. The recipes are all straightforward and produce great results. Let's eat.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 17, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

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