Longing for Spring, and overjoyed by the produce at Iovine’s, and inspired by the recent cherry-blossom festivals on the East Coast, I decided to go Japanese-style with this month’s Dinner Party Club meal. I started the meal off with these cute little “pocket” sushi – tofu puffs soaked and split and filled with saki rice, carrots, and black sesame seeds.
The first spring rolls of the year always come out a little lumpy, and these were no exception. They were, however, tasty and non-traditionally filled with kiwi, mango, chopped cashews and chili and served with a honey-sweet-spicy sauce.
Second course was a shitake soba soup that works on the same premise is my classic shitake udon soup, but with bok choy and frozen-then-fried tofu which has a texture my friends really like, probably because it’s meatier. Personally, I prefer the classic pressed style.
I LOVED these deconstructed sushi bowls, based on a recipe from epicurious.com. Boston lettuce bowls filled with sushi rice, topped with steamed snap peas, and asparagus, fresh red pepper, broccoli sprouts, fried egg crepe, enoki mushrooms, black sesame seeds, and just a drizzle of a sauce made from chili sesame oil and soy sauce.
Not the best photo, I know, but these panko-crusted and baked asparagus were really yummy. I dredged them in the remaining chili-mayo I made the week before (thinned with rice wine vinegar) and served them with a sort of half-sweet chili oil sauce. And a side of soy-glazed japanese eggplant, which didn’t look as pretty, but weren’t that bad.
Dessert? I forgot to take photos. But a big plate of ripe blood oranges and pieces of spicy mango dark chocolate. DPC is the best.