In Laos, this laap (a ground meat dish) is usually made with duck and can be eaten alone or with sticky rice. The recipe here substitutes ground turkey, which is more readily available in the US and less expensive. But to make it the authentic way, use an equal amount of duck breast trimmed of fat, freeze it for 10 minutes and then finely chop by hand.
Pairing: Riesling from Australia's cool Eden Valley: 2009 Rolf Binder Highness or 2009 Elderton.
Paul Grieco of Terroir in Manhattan is one of the few sommeliers to serve wines from Sicily's Frank Cornelissen, who favors a hyper-natural approach and the use of amphorae for red wines. Chef Marco Canora's pasta with braised duck is just the thing with Cornelissen's red; this version calls for duck confit.
Pairing: Edgy Italian white: NV Cornelissen MunJebel 6.
Lemongrass-Cilantro Chicken with Honey Dipping Sauce
Pings (simple grilled dishes), like these juicy grilled chicken breasts, are very popular all over Laos. Bruising the lemongrass is an essential step that helps release its flavor into the marinade, which can also be used for fish or pork.