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Video: Bring in the New Year with surf & turf

TODAY recipes
updated 1/3/2012 4:01:50 PM ET 2012-01-03T21:01:50

Want to wow guests at your next party with dishes that are both festive and memorable? Here, chef Ming Tsai shares mouthwatering recipes that are ideal for any bash.

First up: Everything you need to create a surf-and-turf slider station. Components include:

  • Whole roasted beef tenderloin (See recipe below);
  • Tea rub (See recipe below);
  • Smoked salmon;
  • Small potato buns;
  • Plum sambal;
  • Wasabi-horseradish cream (See recipe below);
  • Crispy onions (See recipe below);
  • Sliced homemade pickles (See recipe below).

Your guests also are sure to love Ming Tsai's recipes for appetizers like shrimp toast, chicken satays with spicy almond sauce, and sesame-crusted goat cheese crostini with sweet and sour apricot chutney.

Recipe: Tea-rubbed beef tenderloin (on this page) Recipe: Wasabi-horseradish cream (on this page) Recipe: Crispy onions (on this page) Recipe: Homemade pickles (on this page) Recipe: Shrimp toast (on this page) Recipe: Chicken satays with spicy almond sauce (on this page) Recipe: Sesame-crusted goat cheese crostini with sweet and sour apricot chutney (on this page)

Recipe: Tea-rubbed beef tenderloin

  • For the beef tenderloin:
  • 1 8-pound beef tenderloin, peeled, side meat on (PISMO), trimmed of silverskin
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • 1/2 cup tea rub (Recipe follows)
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • For the tea rub:
  • 1 1/2 cups lapsang souchong tea leaves
  • 1/4 cup sea salt or kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup chipotle chile powder
  • 1/4 cup dehydrated garlic or regular garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons five-spice powder

To prepare the beef tenderloin:
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Season the beef with salt and coat with tea rub.

Heat a large, ovenproof sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan and swirl to coat. Cook beef until well-colored on one side, about 2 to 3 minutes, then turn and continue to cook until colored on all sides. Transfer pan to the oven and roast until beef is cooked to desired doneness, about 45 minutes to an hour. For rare: internal temperature of 120 to 125 degrees F. For medium-rare: 125 to 130 degrees F.

To make the tea rub:
Mix all ingredients together.

Recipe: Wasabi-horseradish cream

  • 2 teaspoons wasabi powder
  • 3 teaspoons water
  • 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

In a medium bowl, combine wasabi powder with water to form a paste. Let stand 10 minutes. Then add horseradish and yogurt and stir to combine. Season to taste.

Recipe: Crispy onions

  • 1 small red onion, cut into 1/8-inch thick rings
  • 1 cup rice flour
  • Oil for cooking
  • Kosher salt

Fill heavy medium pot one-third full with oil and heat over high heat to 300 degrees F. Dip onion rings in rice flour and shake off excess. Fry until golden brown. Place on paper-towel-lined plate to drain and season.

Recipe: Homemade pickles

  • 2 cups rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Szechwan peppercorns, toasted
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 English cucumbers, cut into 1/4-inch thick rounds
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • Kosher salt

Bring vinegar to a simmer, add peppercorns and sugar. Pour over cucumbers and onions. Season to taste. Cool to room temperature then refrigerate overnight.

Recipe: Shrimp toast

  • For the shrimp toast:
  • 1⁄2 pound Shrimp Mousse (recipe below)
  • 1 cup jicama, cut into 1⁄8-inch dice
  • 1 loaf thinly sliced bread, preferably whole wheat, crusts removed, stale or dried is the best (Take off crust before drying in 200-degree F oven.)
  • 1⁄2 cup sliced scallions
  • 1⁄4 cup sesame seeds
  • Canola or grapeseed oil for cooking
  • For the Shrimp Mousse:
  • 1⁄2 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon truffle oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground white pepper, to taste

To make the shrimp toast:
Fill a fryer or a heavy medium pot one-third full with oil over high heat to 350 degrees F. In a bowl, gently fold together the mousse with jicama and scallions. Spread a 1/4-inch layer of mousse on one side of the bread and sprinkle on scallions and sesame seeds. Press gently so scallions and seeds adhere to surface. Fry, mousse side down, until golden brown, then flip and continue frying until both sides are brown. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate, drain well and slice.

To prepare the shrimp mousse:
In a food processor, place the shrimp and egg and blend until almost smooth. Add the truffle oil and season. Test a small piece for flavor by sautéing or microwaving it. Place in a container, cover, and store in fridge for up to 2 days. Makes about 1 cup.

Serving Size

Serves 4.

Recipe: Chicken satays with spicy almond sauce

  • For the chicken satays
  • 1 package satay skewers, 6-8 inch, soaked
  • 2 large skinless chicken breast, sliced on the bias, 1/3 inch thick slices, brined*
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • Almonds for garnish
  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • For the spicy almond sauce:
  • 1 cup slivered almonds
  • 1 tablespoon sambal oelek
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/4 cup fresh Thai or sweet basil leaves
  • 1 tablespoon Thai fish sauce (nam pla)
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

To make the chicken satays:
Skewer one piece chicken slice, lengthwise. Season with salt and pepper. Prepare a hot, cleaned grill, sprayed slick. Mix the oils and lightly brush on satays and season the satays with kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper and grill for about 4 to 5 minutes a side until fully cooked. Serve with bowl of spicy almond sauce and garnish with almonds.

*Brine method:
Add enough salt and sugar to a quart of water so that it tastes like sweet salt water. Multiply as necessary to fully submerge protein in a large container. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Rinse under running water before cooking.

To make the spicy almond sauce:
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Spread the almonds on a baking sheet and toast, tossing once, until brown, 15 to 20 minutes. Watch carefully because the almonds burn easily. Allow to cool. Combine the toasted almonds, sambal oelek, cilantro leaves, basil leaves, fish sauce, lime juice and canola oil in a food processor. Puree to make a smooth sauce. Add a little water, if necessary, to achieve a pancake-batter-like consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Serving Size

Makes 12 to 14 satays.

Recipe: Sesame-crusted goat cheese crostini with sweet and sour apricot chutney

  • For the crostini:
  • 1 large baguette, cut on bias, sliced into 1/4-inch slices
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup white sesame seeds, not toasted
  • 1 log goat cheese, sliced into 1-inch disks using dental floss
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Canola oil
  • Sweet and sour apricot chutney (recipe below)
  • For the sweet and sour apricot chutney:
  • 2 red onions, cut into 1⁄2-inch dice
  • 2 tablespoons minced lemongrass, white part only
  • 2 cups dried apricots, chopped
  • 1⁄2 cup sugar
  • 2 cups naturally brewed rice vinegar
  • Grapeseed or canola oil for cooking
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

To make the crostini:
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Place baguette slices on a sheet pan and brush with olive oil. Toast in oven for 8 to 10 minutes.

2. Set broiler to high broil. Place sesame seeds on a plate and press one side of goat cheese disks into seeds. In a small bowl, combine the sesame and canola oils.

3. Place toasted baguettes on a heat-proof plate, season with salt and pepper and top with goat cheese. Drizzle sesame-canola mixture over goat cheese. Place under broiler until sesame seeds begin to color and cheese has softened, about 1 to 2 minutes.

4. To serve, put a little apricot chutney on top of each crostini and enjoy, being careful of the hot plate.

To make the sweet and sour apricot chutney:
In a sauté pan coated lightly with oil over high heat, sauté the onions and lemongrass until soft, about 5 minutes. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper and check for flavor. Add apricots and sugar and deglaze with naturally brewed rice vinegar. Reduce by 75 percent, or until liquid is absorbed. Check again for seasoning. When cool, transfer to a container, cover and store in fridge for up to two weeks. Makes 4 cups.

Serving Size

Serves 4 as an appetizer.

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