Archive for the ‘Salads’ Category

* Tofu Chrysanthemum and Parsley Salad

Posted on August 10th, 2014 by Linda. Filed under Chinese, Course, Cuisine, Salads, Shanghainese, tofu.

Ma Lan Tou Shanghainese Tofu

Ma Lan Tou is a refreshing Shanghainese cold appetizer.  In Shanghai, they use a vegetable called Indian Aster, but here substituted with Shungiku in Japanese or Tong Ho/Tong Hao in Cantonese/Mandarin.


1/4 cup light soy sauce
1 Tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
3 Tablespoons sesame oil

1/2 bunch chrysanthemum leaves, chopped
1/2 bunch flat leaf Italian parsley, stems removed, rough mince
1/2 bunch cilantro leaves, chopped
2 stalks green onions, green parts only, chopped
1 lb firm tofu, crumbled

Prepare the dressing. Whisk dressing ingredients together. Set aside.
Prepare the salad: Finely chop the herbs.   Crumble and roughly mash tofu with a fork. Toss tofu and herbs with dressing. Let sit for 15 minutes before serving.

Serves: 6

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* Laphet Burmese Tea Leaves Salad

Posted on July 5th, 2014 by Linda. Filed under Appetizer, Burmese, Course, Cuisine, Salads.

The laphet tea leaves salad is probably the most popular Burmese dish outside of Myanmar.  Thanks to Burma Superstar.  Folks have sworn it’s the best salad ever across any cuisine!  The reason I am updating my blog tonight is because I had too much of this salad this afternoon, and am now wide awake.  The salad does give you a caffeine buzz!

Being in the US, it’s almost impossible to find any Burmese groceries.  So sourcing pickled tea leaves is quite the challenge.  I even trekked out to Daly City where there is a large Burmese community to try to find the tea leaves only to be disappointed by a small packet of prepared laphet that is both rancid and tasted foully processed.  In this recipe, I am using just green tea leaves.  Green tea leaves by itself is fermented, although just so slightly.  The pickled version starts the same but you leave it to ferment for about a week at room temperature.  I actually like the fresh unfermented version better as it tastes more like a salad!  You can serve it traditionally where all the ingredients are laid out separately and guests make their own, or just toss them all together.

Laphet Burmese Tea Leaves Salad


1/2 cup dried green tea leaves, loosely packed
2 cups cabbage, finely chopped or shredded
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup green onions, chopped

1 cup grape tomatoes

1/2 cup rice bran oil
6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

1/4 cup dried lentils or lima beans, soaked 1 hour, drained then pat very dry
3 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted
3 tablespoons peanuts, roasted

3 Tablespoons garlic oil
1 teaspoon sesame oil

2 Tablespoons dried shrimp, soaked in water for 10 minutes and drained, then pounded fine

2 Serrano chilies, minced
1 lime, juice only

1 teaspoon sugar
2 Tablespoon fish sauce

Preparing the tea leaves
Pour 4 cups of hot water over the dried tea leaves, stir, and steep 10 minutes. Then drain, pick through the leaves, and discard any tough bits. Squeeze out any remaining liquid from the tea leaves as thoroughly as possible. Next place the tea leaves in lukewarm water and mash with your hands a little. Drain and squeeze out extra liquid. Repeat this rinse once more, then add cold water and let stand for 1 hour. Drain, squeeze thoroughly to remove excess water. Chop the leaves finely.

Mix tea leaves together with cabbage, cilantro, green onions and tomatoes. Set aside.

Preparing the crunchies
Heat oil and add garlic slices and fry till golden. Remove garlic and set aside. Next, add drained lentils, and fry till golden and crunchy.

Prepare the dressing
Mix all dressing ingredients together.

Toss the salad with the dressing and crunchies (garlic slices, lentils, peanuts and sesame seeds) and serve immediately.

Serves: 6

Laphet Burmese Tea Leaves Salad

Laphet Burmese Tea Leaves Salad

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* Mizuna with Goma

Posted on March 2nd, 2014 by Linda. Filed under Course, Japanese, Salads, Sides.

Make a whole jar of this salad dressing and pour it over everything – noodles, fish, lettuces, eggs….

Chef’s tip:  You can use regular mayo if you can;t find the Japanese one.  The Japanese mayo is a bit sweeter, creamier and eggier.

Goma dressing:

3 Tablespoons white sesame seeds
1/2 shallot
2 Tablespoons brown rice vinegar
2 Tablespoons light soy sauce
1 teaspoon ginger juice
2 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon mirin
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1/2 cup rice bran oil
2 Tablespoons Japanese mayonnaise
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt


4 cups mizuna leaves
2 cups baby tatsoi, or spinach
2 Japanese cucumber, sliced into discs
1 Fuyu persimmon, sliced into half rounds, thinly
3 Watermelon daikon, spiral cut ribbons, or julienned sticks

Toast sesame until fragrant.  Be careful not to burn.  Transfer seeds to a suribachi / mortar & pestle, and grid till flaky.  In a blender, combine shallot, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, ginger juice, sugar, mirin and sesame oil. Blend till smooth. Slowly add the oil.  Then add sesame seeds and mayo and blitz to combine.  Dressing should be emulsified and slightly thickened.  Season with salt, and more sugar if needed.

Toss mizuna, tatsoi and cucumber together in a salad bowl.  Drizzle on half the dressing and toss to just coat.  If needed, add more dressing.  Top with fuyu slices and watermelon daikon.

Serves: 6

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