Monthly Archives: July 2011

heirloom tomato & seaweed salad

Thinking about this week’s dinner line up? Here’s a good one to try at home after your market visit tomorrow. It’s also on the menu at SUSHISAMBA 7 and park (NYC) and dromo (Miami).

Ingredients for Four Servings
heirloom tomatoes, 2, quartered / grape tomatoes, 1 cup, halved / cucumber, 1/2, peeled, batonettes / white grapes, 1 cup, halved / wakame, 1 cup /  ginger-soy vinaigrette, as preferred / maldon salt, to taste / micro celery / sesame seeds, 4 tbsp, toasted
Method: Wash and prepare vegetables as indicated. Mix all ingredients together and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds. Garnish with micro celery.

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celia cruz

get moving, people!

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Today we booked our next big culinary adventure – to Brazil! From July 26-August 4, Koji, Mere, our new London Chef (who will be announced in the coming months… stay tuned) and I will head to Rio de Janeiro, Salvador and Sao Paulo to revisit some of the country’s more traditional dishes and explore their newer tastes and executions. I’m especially excited to uncover new ingredients that we can bring to the table at our SUSHISAMBA restaurants this fall.

Be sure to check back with us soon… we’ll be reporting daily from The Samba Country.

We found this awesome photo by Laszlo Ilyes via

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bolinhos de bacalhau

Today kicks off NYC Summer Restaurant Week and I’m excited about the line up at both locations. (We’ll feature a few more in ingredient this week)

For SUSHISAMBA park’s RW Dinner menu we’re breaking out a Brazilian favorite – Bolinhos de Bacalhau – served with pallares bean purée and salsa verde. The recipe was passed from the Portuguese during colonization in Brazil in the 1500s. Bacalhau (salted cod) was important for these countries not only because it could be preserved over longer periods of time – but also because it was in-line with the requirements of the Catholic Church (which forbade eating meat during specific holy days).

Today, Bolinhos de Bacalhau are still a well-loved dish in Brazil. I’d say – best paired with a caipirinha.

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As we’re developing some culinary education programs for our FOH staff it’s been interesting to revisit the inspiration behind some our signatures.

The Yamato Roll (Big Eye Tuna, Sturgeon Caviar, Foie Gras, 24k Gold Leaf) was one of Koji’s awesome creations. He named it after a popular sci-fi anime series in Japan, where Yamato was an intergalactic space ship. The roll with it’s unique shape/balance – resembles this space ship. We did a little more research and learned that Yamato was the name of Japan’s largest and most powerful battleship in World War II. Even today it remains a poetic name for Japan and a symbol of heroism.

The roll itself is another great example of the way SUSHISAMBA’s sushi departs from tradition and takes risks… Risks that taste awesome.

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recipe writing

recipe writing; old school:

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it’s all about the dashi

We’re in the process of revisiting and reformatting the entire SUSHISAMBA recipe collection. It’s a lot of work but it’s been good to revisit the building blocks of our signature recipes. Yesterday I was thinking a lot more about dashi which is key for our miso soup – but an all-around vital ‘base’ Japanese cooking. There are two types: Ichiban dashi – which is stronger and most appropriate for soups and sauces. Then, there’s Niban dashi – which is a more subtle flavor. Because we’re using dashi daily for our miso soup – we use the Ichiban style:

yield: 2 liters

water, soft / filtered         2 liters
konbu                                  2 pieces
bonito flakes                      30 grs

Method: Add konbu to pot of water and bring to 140F for 40 minutes to exact the flavors and umami out of the kelp. Remove the kelp from the pot and add the bonito flakes. Bring the water to 170F and allow bonito flakes to sink to the bottom of the pot. Pass through a chinois with cheesecloth.

Chef’s Notes: Pass the broth through the cheesecloth SLOWLY to prevent cloudiness in the broth. Note: The vegetarian substitution for dashi is to use shiitake mushrooms instead of bonito flakes.

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