I’m excited to teach a group of women how to make dumplings, Asian salad and fried rice this evening. Cooking parties are the new girl’s night in, where women put on their aprons, gather for wine and learn how to cook something new. It’s a refreshing change from the same old night out in a restaurant and you can learn some new skills while spending time with friends. It’s fun for me too, since I get to meet new women at every party. And though I’m there to teach them, I always learn a new trick or tip too! Among various menus, I’ve taught people how to make tapas, food for summer entertaining, preserving farm fresh foods and empanadas. My parties are an ideal way to treat a friend to a unique way to celebrate a birthday. I’ve really been teaching a lot this year in middle school and adult schools — and I particularly like teaching in the form of the cooking party. If you’re interested in learning more or booking one for someone, please e-mail me privately at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Serve this crunchy salad as a side with lettuce wraps, tacos or even burgers at a BBQ. The sweet and tangy flavor compliments most anything!
6 cups shredded Napa Cabbage
2 cups baby Bok Choy, chopped
1 bunch scallions, sliced and cut into 1 inch pieces
1 cup carrots, shredded or julienned
½ cup sugar snap or snow peas, slice and stems cut
¼ cup cilantro, washed and chopped
½ cup toasted almonds
2 cups crispy wonton strips (approximately 12 wonton wrappers)*
1/8 cup canola oil (for frying wontons)
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3 tablespoons soy sauce
4 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
2 teaspoons sesame oil (more if you like a stronger sesame flavor)
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
Juice from ½ lime
½ teaspoon salt
To make crispy wonton wrappers, heat the canola oil in a small 6 inch skillet. Cut the wonton wrapper squares into 5 strips. Once the oil is hot, cook the strips in batches until golden. Season with salt and transfer to a paper towel lined plate. Set aside.
To toast almonds, heat a small skillet. Cook the almonds for a few minutes until golden, shaking the pan frequently and keeping a close eye on them so they don’t burn. Season with salt and set aside.
Place the cabbage, bok choy, carrots, scallions, snow peas and cilantro in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk the sugar, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, lime juice and salt. Just before serving, toss the vegetables with the dressing and serve with the crunchy wontons and almonds on top.
*Make extra wontons and serve with duck sauce as a snack.