This ’n’ That

Asian Pesto

I’ve been on an Asian food kick for the past few weeks – maybe because I’ve been working on a feature article about a woman who grew up during the Cultural Revolution, and we’ve had several lunch meetings at her favourite Chinese restaurant. Anyway. I’ve just polished off the last of a jar of (homemade) ginger and onion sauce. With apologies to my Italian brother-in-law, I call it Asian Pesto. It’s delicious, versatile, good for your throat and sinuses – and it’s so easy to prepare, it doesn’t need a demo.
All you need is a piece of ginger about as big as your palm, a bunch of green onions, and 1/2 – 3/4 cup of peanut oil.

Peel the ginger. Tip: use the edge of a spoon to scrape off the ginger’s thin brown skin and get around all the knobby bits. For easier handling, hold the spoon where the bowl meets the stem. Grate the peeled ginger finely. Slice the green onions thinly. Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed sauce pan. When the oil is hot, dump in the prepared ginger and onion, give it a good stir, and take it off the heat. Allow it to cool before placing it in a clean jar.

Asian Pesto keeps for up to a month in the fridge. Serve it as a dipping sauce for roast and steamed chicken, fish, pork, or tofu. You can also use it to flavour steamed white rice or noodles.
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