And London-based Israeli chef Yotam Ottolenghi, although on the other side of the spectrum and the world for that matter, has also very much inspired me - warm zesty tangy spicy hearty tart sweet piquant pungent smokey clean Mediterranean food. Reminds me of home...my family's roots being in North Africa and Israel.
And all the while, I've been cooking, instagram-ing and not blogging. Well, here's to a new years resolution in action: more blog posts, many many more posts...
cabbage palm cakes served with sriracha veganaise sauce, bitter greens and cashew pesto penne
bottom right, homemade babaganoush - recipe to come!
Hearts of palm are the edible inner part of the stem of the cabbage palm tree...their flavor is a cross between an artichoke and asparagus yet they have this miraculous texture similar to lump crab meat and they are common in central American cuisine.
What you'll need:
1 [glass] jar of hearts of palm
1.5 tsp. Old Bay seasoning
Pinch of salt and pepper
1 tsp dijon mustard
1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
1-2 tbsp. fresh dill, chopped
3 scallions, chopped
1/4 cup frozen organic roasted corn kernels
1/2 roasted red, yellow or green pepper [prepared pepper from a jar works too], minced and squeezed of liquid
1/2 cup of corn flour
canola oil for pan frying
Pulse the hearts of palm just a couple of times so they break up and resemble lump crab.
Toss with Old Bar, salt and pepper in a bowl.
Add the dill, panko, scallions, corn, red pepper and dijon.
Cover and let set in fridge for at least an hour.
After an hour, remove mixture and form into little cake patties and place on a cutting board...larger or smaller...this part is personal.
Cover and put back into the fridge for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile place the corn flour on a rimmed plate and heat your oil in a cast iron pan, preferably.
Coat each cake with the corn oil and pan fry 2-3minutes on each side.
Garnish with chives and serve with lemon or lime quarters, cholua or sriracha...Enjoy!