Monday, March 31, 2014

Healthy Lifestyles Class: Healthy Appetizers

Last week in my Healthy lifestyles class, we were to make a number of healthy appetizers/ hor d'oeuvres. We were given a number of recipes to work from. One of the interesting things about the way Chef Kim organizes his labs is that he doesn't micromanage us. He gives us recipes, but gives us leave to deviate from them in our own creative fashion. Also, he basically gives us a goal, gives us product to work with, then lets us work out how it gets done.

As a group, we were to make four appetizers, two hor d'oeuvres, and a salad. We had four recipes given us, and we were to adapt two of them to work as hor d'oeuvres. For the salad, we were on our own to create something. Presentation was to be a big part of things.

I made both an appetizer and an hor d'oeuvre from the recipe for Vietnamese style spring rolls. They were very similar to the ones I did for my Pan Asian dinner. The rolls have cooked shrimp, lettuce, rice noodles, julienned carrot and daikon radish, cilantro, and slivers of yellow bell pepper.

The dipping sauce is a mix of rice wine vinegar, fish sauce, lemon juice, sugar, garlic, and sriracha.

I garnished the plate with a little minced peanuts.

For the smaller version, I cut the rice paper wrappers in half, and  left out the shredded lettuce.

This is a great, refreshing appetizer. Very healthy, with no added fat.

For the salad, I collaborated with one of my teammates on a seafood salad, using some of my leftover shrimp, and some of the scallops from another appetizer made by a different teammate.

We included mixed greens, sauteed baby shitake mushrooms, tomato, and some sweet yellow and orange peppers. My teammate made a nice vinaigrette to go with it.

All and all, I'm happy with both the flavors and presentations we did. Chef had some minor critiques, some ideas for improvement, but there were no terrible missteps.

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