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Hello, my name is Holly, and I am an addict. I have ordered Lecosho’s Chargrilled Prawns too many times to count in the past five weeks.
And, why not? This dish is the perfect, delicious embodiment of late summer. The corn has the delicate smoky sweet that only grilled corn can have, the prawns are consistently succulent, and the slightly sweet fennel salad is the perfect juxtapositon to the mild heat of the creamy chile sauce. It’s an addiction for sure, but one that I don’t want to quit.
Like many professionals, Chef Cody of Lecosho doesn’t work from a recipe but instead uses intuition and knowledge to guide him to the perfect dish, seasoning as he goes. When asked for a recipe, he happily described the process and the how-tos, but had no exact measurements to share. So, for those that prefer precise measurements, this recipe’s a challenge — but a challenge well worth undertaking! Go on, try it out, and test your cooking chops. If you decide to just go to Lecosho and order the prawns off the menu, I highly recommend ending your evening with the cardamom olive oil cake served with macerated Rainier cherries and almond gelato. You can’t go wrong with that!
Who says you have to make curry with curry? Not us!
When my friend and mentor Julie Kramis Hearne approached me to co-author World Spice at Home, I was thrilled to accept. Julie’s book vision was compelling, and it perfectly matched our mission at World Spice.
Using spices in everyday cooking with confidence, creativity and ease is what this book is all about. We’ve all experienced the lure of an exotic spice blend and wondered how to use it, and World Spice at Home provides the answer. Julie and I selected our favorite spice blends and set out to show just how easily you can use each one, and in so many different ways! Creating World Spice at Home has been an amazing collaboration- with one recipe idea sparking another, and more often than not there is something new for dinner.
Perhaps the hardest task in creating World Spice at Home was narrowing down the list of spice blends to include in the book- and why we couldn’t settle for a nice round number like twelve. It really needed to be thirteen….
Baharat– a Middle Eastern exotic can be used on a grilled rib-eye or spiced nuts.
Berbere– an Ethiopian signature spice blend can be used in chili and on brisket.
Besar– an Emerti blend, at home on pork chops and in gingerbread cake
Chinese Five Spice in sweets, like shortbread and apple pie.
Kashmiri Curry makes a great dressing for grilled vegetables
Poudre de Colombo adds fabulous flavor to skillet prawns.
Tikka Masala is classic on baked chicken.
Dukkah from Egypt adds flavor and texture to goat cheese and flatbread
Harissa is a Moroccan classic that elevates the flavor of a simple roast chicken.
Kashmiri Garam Masala is a match made in heaven on anything chocolate.
Ras el Hanout is the secret ingredient for everything from pork chops to kale tabbouleh.
Israeli Za’atar for corn chowder and french fries!
Syrian Za’atar on rack of lamb or salmon.
World Spice at Home is the perfect book to help you decide what to do with any spice blend and you will find yourself visiting the spice cabinet much more often. From our kitchens to yours- Enjoy!
To celebrate the last gasp of summer, and the upcoming release of World Spice at Home, enjoy another sneak peek from the book!
The combination of exotic spices on seafood served with pineapple will transport you straight to the tropics. The bright layers of citrus and spice blend perfectly into the coconut oil and onto the shrimp. If you don’t have time to skewer, just add the shrimp and pineapple to your indoor grill pan and serve on a platter with toothpicks. You can also turn this into a main dish by serving with steamed or grilled vegetables and rice.
*(c)2014 By Amanda Bevill and Julie Kramis Hearne. All rights reserved. Excerpted from World Spice at Home: New Flavors for 75 Favorite Dishes by permission of Sasquatch Books.
Recently, Holly admitted her powerlessness over the char grilled prawns at the West Edge’s favorite eatery, Lecosho. She recommended following the dish with this fantastic cardamom olive oil cake for dessert, and my ears perked right up.
Now as a Sicilian, when you say “olive oil,” I say “more!” So I called over to beg pastry chef Andrea for her recipe and she graciously gave it up. The Ranier cherries that she serves with it are at the end of their season now, but don’t let that stop you from attempting this cake! Try a few slices of Northwest pear, poached in wine and sugar, or a few cubes of caramelized pumpkin, roasted until soft to garnish. This cake is heavenly with freshly ground cardamom, but is also a brilliant vehicle to feature any number of exotic spices- try pink peppercorns, saffron, fennel (or fennel pollen!) or anise seed, paired with a different flavors of gelato.
A word on the recipe itself: “Real deal” bakers and pastry chefs weigh their ingredients, much like we weigh our spices here in the shop. Weighing provides far more consistent and accurate measurements, which is why we choose to sell our spices that way, too. I left Chef Andrea’s original weights in the recipe in case you’re in possession of a gram scale, but also translated them to the more commonly used volume measurements for the average home cook, too.
A word of advice from a novice gardener: Carrots are much bigger than carrot seeds. Somehow, fifty-odd square feet of garden space doesn’t seem like that much when it’s being planted, but it can produce a surprising haul, most especially in the carrot department. Praise be that carrots are delicious, so their being excessively plentiful is a problem I’m thankful to have! This soup is hearty and delicious, made velvety by the soft puree of carrots, and from the toasted rice in the Poudre de Colombo curry. We’ve dressed it up a little with the prawns, but this soup can easily be made vegan by omitting them and using red miso paste in favor of the Worcestershire powder.