Saturday, December 3, 2011

Holiday Gifts with Asian Flavors

by Phyllis Louise Harris
December 2011

You don’t have to look far for a variety of holiday gifts from local chefs, restaurants, and food professionals.  Here are just a few:

Japanese Fish Class Feb. 6 from Koshiki Yonemura of Tanpopo Noodle Shop
Give your favorite cook this Cooks of Crocus Hill class from the talented Koshiki Yonemura.  Learn how to skin and fillet a fish then cook Hamachi Yellowtail and Ikura, Steamed Sea Bass with Sesame Oil and Ginger, Walleye and Scallop Tempura – even Sashimi and Sushi.  This exceptional class from 6 – 9 p.m., Feb 6, is $65 per person and registration is required.  Go to or call 651-228-1333.

Sushi Classes from Coastal Seafoods
One of the area’s best seafood providers is also one of the first to offer a continuing schedule of Sushi classes throughout the year.  Pick up a gift certificate from one of their locations or get the schedule and order online at .

“Crying Tiger” by Supatra’s Thai restaurant owner Supatra Johnson
With family recipes from her Thai home, Supatra Johnson’s cookbook makes cooking Thai food at home easy to do right here in Minnesota.  Not sure how the dish will taste?  Try it in her restaurant first at 967 West Seventh Street, St. Paul, pick up a copy of her cookbook, and then try it at home.  Her website is also a treasure of Thai food information and includes schedules for upcoming classes.

Three-Course Peking Duck Dinner at Shuang Cheng  1320 4th Street SE in Dinkytown
Treat your favorite person (or persons) to one of the great dining experiences from China.  Start with Crisp Duck Skin with Pancakes and House Special Sauce, then move on to Roast Duck Bones with Mustard Green Soup, and finally stir-fried Roast Duck Meat with Vegetables.  Just $39.00 and serves 3 to 4 people, call ahead to order at 612-378-0208 or go to the website at for the complete menu of more than 300 Chinese dishes.

Award-winning “660 Curries” plus Raghavan Iyer’s new Turmeric Trail Spices Make Indian Cooking Easy
Mumbai native Raghavan Iyer created an outstanding collection of Indian recipes in his 2008 cookbook, “660 Curries.”  It garnered rave reviews, an outstanding cookbook award, and is in its second printing.  Add some of his special spice blends available at and the gift not only keeps on giving, but has a wonderful aroma.  Also available at Kitchen in the Market, Midtown Global Market in Minneapolis featuring special events throughout the year.