David Chang was inspired to make these playful rolls by a snack he had at Yunpilam, a temple in South Korea, where the nuns served him edamame mixed with walnuts and molasses. His rolls have an edamame-and-walnut filling; unlike other sushi rolls, they can be served warm.
Inspired by a snack served at Japanese restaurants, Marcia Kiesel boils udon noodles until they are just al dente, then ties them into small bundles and quickly fries them in a shallow layer of vegetable oil. They are addictively crunchy.
In this very simple appetizer, Jeremy Fox combines slivers of nori with bits of goat cheese—a clever, tantalizing mix of salty and creamy—then serves the dish with radishes and a sprinkle of smoked salt.
French fries have gone way beyond the prosaic russet potato. At Fork in Philadelphia, for instance, Ellen Yin features yuca and taro fries on her menu. Then there are the irresistible fries created by Gene Kato for the Japonais restaurants originating in Chicago. Made with sweet potatoes, the frites are seasoned with a blend of Japanese flavorings, including nori flakes and the tingly spice mix shichimi togarashi.
Josh DeChellis is used to diners' initial skepticism when it comes to what he calls his more "out of control" ingredient combinations. Even the F&W Test Kitchen wondered if nori and wasabi could possibly go with the beef here. They do, and brilliantly. What's more, the recipe's healthy; ounce for ounce, sirloin has less saturated fat than chicken thigh with skin.
"Korean-style horumon stalls are big in Tokyo," says Andrew Zimmern. "These tiny restaurants grill dozens of skewers with animal parts like udders, cockscomb, trachea, you name it. But even with conventional meat, grilling techniques like basting with fresh ginger juice are genius. If you're not adventurous, try it on chicken thighs."
Soba Noodles with Dashi, Poached Egg and Scallions
Chef Douglas Keane of Cyrus restaurant in Healdsburg, California, and an F&W Best New Chef 2006 creates a quick but flavorful broth using kombu (a type of seaweed) and dashi powder (an instant Japanese stock made from shaved bonito tuna flakes). He poaches eggs in the broth and serves them for a protein-rich lunch or even breakfast.