Eat more – Upar Gaar (Murtani) (Photo by Cynthia Nelson)

While many of you have probably resolved this New Year to cut out, restrict, or deprive yourselves of certain food and drinks, I resolve to continue moderating my intake, and, to expand my palette. I have a list of things to try; and certain things I want to make and eat more of.

Things to try

Pig’s Ear Salad: There are two versions of this salad – soft and crispy. I am thinking more of the soft version that is served at room temperature with flavours of Asia such as lemongrass, Sichuan peppercorns, cilantro, sesame seeds, soy sauce, black vinegar and fish sauce. It is a simple 2-step process of first cooking the pig’s ears and making a dressing to pour over slices of the meat. It can make you think of souse but the flavours are extremely different. The crispy version requires the pig’s ears to be first cooked tender then deep fried – whole or cut into strips. The crispy version of Pig’s Ear Salad is usually served on a bed of lettuce leaves.

Baklava with coconut: This is going to be more of an experiment. Baklava is a rich, dessert pastry made with layers of phyllo filled with chopped nuts, sweetened and held together with a flavourful syrup. Instead of chopped nuts, I want to try making Baklava with very finely chopped or grated coconut. Stay tuned!….

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