20140826-200810-72490043.jpgI had just picked up the latest September, 2014 issue of Bon Appetit, a magazine trying its level best to be cooler than you’ll ever aspire to be, does present a food pile of useful recipes. This month it’s all about the best new restaurants of 2014 and #7 on the list is Hot Joy, an Asian mashup of cuisines, and I gotta admit that the dishes look awfully good in the magazine.

And the chef is a white boy named Quealy…doing Asian/Mexican fusion…something dishes. Well! I decided on the Kale and Celery Tiger Salad (sans chili infusion in the dressing so I’ll be crying for a different reason) which at least looks startling tasty. My wife had been after me to put more greens on the table and given that kale is good for us (particularly moi when not cooked–more on that some other day) this dish sung to me.

And I want a Pisco Sour tonight!” She said on the phone. Yah, it had been that kind of day– for both of us.

Omigod. Awful awful, awful. Total salt bomb and it was my fault, trusting in the chef of the 7th best restaurant in America of 2014…and not tasting the dressing. JEEZIS aitch KEErist, the dressing was a total salt attack and even too acidic.

Taste, taste, TASTE. So this dish gets a walk, and I realize that ‘fish sauce’ varies from country to country. I had used patis, the standard fish sauce of the Philippines, but maybe the Thai stuff would have been milder? Will have to try.

We had to throw it out. Wifey felt the dish could have been saved if there had been more greens in the mix to stretch out the saltiness, but frankly, holding onto wet salad has never been much fun for me. Terrible results.

The Pisco sours, however, were awesome.


This dish could be saved, by cutting back measurably on the fish sauce. Future wisdom.

I ended up defrosting some pita bread and slapped some Nicasio Valley San Geronimo cheese in the pockets to cleanse our palates. Yuck. Yuck. I may try again, as it was a very pretty thing to see.

Valuable lesson learned, and I need to say it before the Pisco Sour removes it from memory–taste, taste, taste. And finally… Where was the %^$&ing tiger in the dish?