Pan Asian: Garlic Squid with Celery (Szechuan, China) Regional flavors have arrived folks! In our culinary sophistication we have finally made it past such illusory categories as “Chinese” or “Indian” food to embrace regional cuisine. In a country as vast as China, we have finally acknowledged that people eat very differently in the various parts of the land. This particular dish belongs to a category of homestyle ...

Skiz Fernando on YouTube When I got into this cooking game some 8 years ago, I never dreamed I would be an executive chef at a restaurant, or write a cookbook, or even have my own line of spices. But a lot of hard work, and a passion for food has got me to where I am today. At my recent supper club in ...

Dinner Lab DC — Rice & Curry — Nov. 14/15 2014 Just came off back to back nights in DC doing two Dinner Labs events that served a total of 220 people. Dinner Lab is a company that regularly stages supper clubs across the country, allowing emerging chefs a chance to shine, and this was my first time working with them. After a hectic 2 days of prep in their DC ...

Pan Asian: Honey Ginger Chicken (Vietnam) Here’s another quick, easy, and delicious one from the Pan Asian files. This one comes from Vietnam, which is one of my ultimate dining destinations. Like much Vietnamese food, this dish plays off the interaction of several tastes–sweet, salty, spicy, savory–though the heat, in this case, is a simple garnish of chili pepper strands. Five Spice Powder is a popular spice ...

Chilaw is a town smack dab in the center of Sri Lanka’s west coast–maybe 2 1/2 hours north of Colombo. It’s known for coconut estates and crabs and really any type of seafood since the town sits on a large freshwater lagoon. I have been there several times to see Leela, my aunt’s former cook, and once, I even ...

Pan Asian: Baigan Bharta (Smoky Roasted Eggplant in Tomato Puree) – India  Baigan Bharta is an iconic dish that you’ve, no doubt, enjoyed at your local Indian eatery. It basically translates to “Eggplant with minced vegetables,” which is a description that hardly does justice to this delicious preparation. Complex, in a smoky, sweet, spicy, savory kind of way, Baigan Bharta thrills the taste buds, and without any animal fat, healthy to boot. ...

Pan Asian: Baigan Bharta (Smoky Roasted Eggplant in Tomato Puree) – India  Baigan Bharta is an iconic dish that you’ve, no doubt, enjoyed at your local Indian eatery. It basically translates to “Eggplant with minced vegetables,” which is a description that hardly does justice to this delicious preparation. Complex, in a smoky, sweet, spicy, savory kind of way, Baigan Bharta thrills the taste buds, and without any animal fat, healthy to boot. ...

Fakhr El-Din Restaurant — Amman, Jordan   Ask anyone who lives or has spent some time in Jordan’s capital of Amman what their favorite restaurant is, and most likely “Fakhr El-Din” will be the first name out of their lips. I had heard plenty about this upscale Lebanese restaurant, founded in 1997 and located near Amman’s second circle in a house once owned by Jordan’s first ...

Fakhr El-Din Restaurant — Amman, Jordan Ask anyone who lives or has spent some time in Jordan’s capital of Amman what their favorite restaurant is, and most likely “Fakhr El-Din” will be the first name out of their lips. I had heard plenty about this upscale Lebanese restaurant, founded in 1997 and located near Amman’s second circle in a house once owned by Jordan’s first Prime ...

On The Road: Israel & The West Bank In light of the recent round of violence between Israel and the Gaza Strip, I probably chose the worst possible time to visit the “Land of milk and honey” for the first time. But as luck would have it, a weeklong cease-fire in mid-August provided a convenient window of opportunity to make a quick trip there to sample its ...

On The Road: Israel & The West Bank In light of the recent round of violence between Israel and the Gaza Strip, I probably chose the worst possible time to visit the “Land of milk and honey” for the first time. But as luck would have it, a weeklong cease-fire in mid-August provided a convenient window of opportunity to make a quick trip there to sample its ...

Pan Asian: Steamed Mussels (Hoi Ma-Laeng Poo Ob) — Thailand I must confess to being a huge fan of mussels. These quick and easy to make little bivalve mollusks, which pack loads of flavor, may be prepared in so many ways, but I prefer mine steamed. Once considered ‘poor man’s food,’ mussels have definitely undergone a transformation of late, and you can see them on restaurant menues for as much ...

Pan Asian: Shrimp (Jhinga) Curry – Pakistan Summer is heating up, and the last place you want to spend too much time is a hot kitchen. But don’t sweat it, because I’ve got just the quick-fix recipe for all you curry lovers. This is a scrumptious shrimp curry from Pakistan which is very easy to put together. Coupled with the fact that shrimp cooks very quickly, ...

Pan Asian: Shrimp (Jhinga) Curry – Pakistan Summer is heating up, and the last place you want to spend too much time is a hot kitchen. But don’t sweat it, because I’ve got just the quick-fix recipe for all you curry lovers. This is a scrumptious shrimp curry from Pakistan which is very easy to put together. Coupled with the fact that shrimp cooks very quickly, ...

Rice & Curry 101 @ The Hill Center DC, May 17th I return to The Hill Center on Capitol Hill in DC to do another class on the basics of Sri Lankan cooking. To be honest, I never thought I’d be doing cooking classes in a million years, but it kind of makes sense as this is an extension of my cooking show on Youtube, Pan Asian.  https://www.youtube.com/user/ThaILLST/featured Also, the ...

Rice & Curry 101 @ The Hill Center DC, May 17th I return to The Hill Center on Capitol Hill in DC to do another class on the basics of Sri Lankan cooking. To be honest, I never thought I’d be doing cooking classes in a million years, but it kind of makes sense as this is an extension of my cooking show on Youtube, Pan Asian.  https://www.youtube.com/user/ThaILLST/featured Also, the ...

YouAssist Fundraiser in VA — A Rousing Success!! This past week I had the pleasure of participating in 2 events which involved Sri Lankan food. The first, was a Sri Lankan Supper Club in Baltimore–put on by yours truly–at the home of some friends which attracted 30 guests, who have all now been duly baptized in the Church of Rice & Curry. Unfortunately in the midst of ...

YouAssist Fundraiser in VA — A Rousing Success!! This past week I had the pleasure of participating in 2 events which involved Sri Lankan food. The first, was a Sri Lankan Supper Club in Baltimore–put on by yours truly–at the home of some friends which attracted 30 guests, who have all now been duly baptized in the Church of Rice & Curry. Unfortunately in the midst of ...

On The Road: Sarajevo, Bosnia Just back from a visit to Bosnia & Hercegovina, one of the former states that comprised Yugoslavia, and a place steeped in history. Not only did the first world war start here, triggered by the assassination of Austro-Hungarian heir to the throne, Franz Ferdinand, but more recently Bosnia suffered the scourge of a horrible regional war that took place scarcely ...

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