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Interpreting Asian Tastes In New Ways

Incorporating the flavors of Asian cuisine in your own kitchen can be a little intimidating at first. But this month we’ll help you discover how to reinterpret a few everyday dishes with some unique twists that you and your family will love. Whether you are hosting a party or planning an easy weeknight meal, we hope we can open your eyes to a whole new world of flavor.

Banh Mi Noodles

1 pound ground pork 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and minced 4 garlic cloves, minced 1 cucumber, peeled and thinly sliced into strips

1 bell pepper, seeded and stemmed, thinly sliced into strips

2 carrots, shredded

1 tablespoon fish sauce 1⁄2 tablespoon honey 2 tablespoons sriracha 21⁄2 tablespoons rice vinegar 1 teaspoon sesame oil

15 ounces coconut milk Juice of 1 lime

About 1 pound rice noodles, fresh or dried Chopped cilantro Sesame seeds Green onions

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, cook the ground pork. Once cooked through, remove from pan and set aside.

To the same pan, add garlic and ginger. Reduce heat to medium and cook for approximately 1 to 2 minutes. Add bell pepper and cucumber, and cook for approximately 3 to 5 minutes. At this time, add the rice noodles to the pot of boiling water and cook briefly according to directions on the package, then rinse in cold water.

When the bell peppers are fairly tender, add carrots, fish sauce, honey, sriracha, rice vinegar, sesame oil, lime juice, and coconut milk to the skillet. Cook for an additional 7 minutes until the sauce is slightly thickened.

Add the cooked pork and cooked rice noodles to the skillet. Stir to combine and heat through. Serve immediately. Garnish with cilantro, green onion, and sesame seeds.

Sweet & Spicy Curry Chutney Crostini

4 peeled, cored, chopped Gala apples 1⁄2 medium red onion, diced 1⁄4 cup apple cider 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

1 teaspoon curry powder 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 10 ounces whole milk ricotta cheese

French baguette, sliced and toasted

In a medium saucepan, combine apples, onion, cider, curry powder, and crushed red pepper flakes over medium heat. Cover and cook, stirring often, until apples are just tender, approximately 15 to 18 minutes. Remove from heat.

Spread toasted bread slices with ricotta. Top with 1 to 11⁄2 tablespoons of the apple mixture. Sprinkle with fresh parsley if desired. Serve immediately.

Thai Basil Gin & Tonic

2 ounces gin Juice of half a lime

1⁄2 ounce simple syrup 3 Thai basil leaves, ripped into pieces

Tonic water Thai basil, for garnish

Combine gin, lime juice, and simple syrup in a highball glass. Add Thai basil leaves and muddle for 30 seconds until you’ve broken the leaves up a bit. Fill the glass 3⁄4 full with ice cubes. Fill the glass with tonic. Garnish with Thai basil.

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