Sunday 22 July 2012

Leek and Wasabi Mash with Oyster Mushrooms and Choi in Coconut Tamarind Sauce

From For the Love of Food, Denis Cotter, Collins, 2011.

One of the selling points for me in this book was that it had a whole section of recipes for mash. And these mashes were all of somewhat exotic sounding names, like this particular one for leek and wasabi mash and accompaniments. I could not resist a book which had such a variety of mash dishes.

To begin the leek was chopped and sautéed in butter until tender. One teaspoon of wasabi powder was mixed to a paste in a little milk. The potatoes were steamed and mashed with warmed milk and melted butter. Then in went the leeks and the wasabi paste. That was the mash done.

For the accompaniment part of the recipe some tamarind pulp was soaked in a little boiling water. It was left to soak and then pushed through a strainer to separate the pulp from the liquid. The tamarind water was kept and the pulp binned.

Oyster mushrooms were now fried in butter for a couple of minutes. In went some bok choi cut into quarters and a very small amount of grated ginger. These were fried until the bok choi were tender. To finish, the tamarind water was added with coconut milk and a little soy sauce.

It was served in pasta bowls with the vegetable mixture alongside the mash.

I found that this did not come together totally as a whole dish. The flavours did not meld well for my palate. It would seem from the short introduction to the dish that Cotter was trying to make a mix work. I don’t feel that it was completely successful. Using an Asian noodle dish and then substituting mash for the noodles did not really work despite Cotter’s efforts to make the mash and sweetness of the coconut milk meld by the addition of the sourness of tamarind. It was quite edible but not something that I would make again. Better luck with the next mash dish I try.

Taste: ✔✔✔
Ease of cooking: ✔✔✔

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