Sunday, February 12, 2012

Spicy Pad Thai Popcorn

One of my favorite places in Charleston, SC, is The Gin Joint. It is this hip little place on East Bay Street with an early 1900s vibe. On their menu item is a Pad Thai Popcorn which dangles on that fine line of sweet and spicy, and I fell in love with the stuff. So I decided to try to make a version of it here at home. Now, for those of you who do not appreciate that fine feeling of your mouth being almost on fire, this recipe is NOT for you!

Spicy Pad Thai Popcorn

10 cups          Popped white popcorn (unsalted, no butter, naked popcorn)
1 cup             Unsalted peanuts
1/4 cup         Olive oil
2 tsp              Fish sauce
1 1/2 tsp        Sambal Oelek (Chinese chili sauce - This is what makes this recipe hot)
1/2 cup         Sugar in the Raw (cane sugar)
1 tsp              Lime Juice

I popped my popcorn per the directions on the bag of plain white popcorn kernels using the stove top pot method. Once you have your popcorn, take the olive oil, heat it in a skillet, and roast your peanuts in it. When they are a golden brown, remove the skillet from the burner and add the wet ingredients and the sugar.

Stir until they are mixed well and then allow the mixture to cool for about 5 minutes.

Toss the popcorn in the mixture to cover the corn evenly and lay the popcorn out on aluminum foil to dry. The final product will still be slightly sticky, but delicious with a kick!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Husk Dinner

Today is my fiancee's birthday, and we decided yesterday to celebrate by going to Husk Restaurant in Charleston, SC. Needless to say, it was divine.  

Since we arrived about an hour early, we started over at the bar, which is a great alternative if you are wanting to experience the atmosphere without doing the casual fine dining. They showcase the same drink menu and a bar food menu that is prepared in the main kitchen.

 I had a Kentucky Kewler and he enjoyed Maker's Mark 46. We also decided to try the cheese plate which included 5 different cheeses, a delicious bread, and fresh fruit. 
Unfortunately, it didn't last long enough for a picture. Sorry. The bartender informed us when our table was ready over at the main restaurant, letting us literally walk straight to our table. We were celebrating during the middle of Charleston's Restaurant Week so the menu for the day was slightly different than normal. Husk offered a 3 course meal for $30, which made this birthday celebration much cheaper than last year's.

The meal was great, and the staff were delightful. I think at least four different people wished my fiancee a happy birthday. This was a treat for him. For our first courses I had the clams and grits which was a spin-off of the traditional shrimp and grits. He had the Southern Fried Chicken Skins. To use his words, "It was a plate full of the best part of the chicken." Second course he had the South Carolina Beef , and I had the Duo of Pork. That pork was amazing. Extremely tender, melt in your mouth good. We also asked for a pan of their cornbread, which was as good as my grandmothers. (I learned a long time ago to not say someone else makes something better than her.) They also have a house bread that was served in a cute cloth napkin. The best way to describe it would be a combination of a roll and a pretzel. They were gone within minutes.
For our final course, his oatmeal pie was topped with a birthday candle to make it a perfect ending. I had the lemon buttermilk pie, which was extremely tart but was well complimented by the side of blueberry compote.

Needless to say, it was a perfect meal to celebrate a birthday!