Sky Full of Bacon

Sky Full of Bacon Presents Parking Lot-Grown Shiso

My favorite part of this week’s challenge was seeing where One Sixty Blue grows herbs and even some vegetables in the summer— its parking lot. It gave me an excuse to do black and white again (a parking lot in color is urban blight; a parking lot in black and white is the gritty romance of the big city). Otherwise, check out what chef Michael McDonald does with two colors of miso, here and in the print piece:

This being Key Ingredient #20, I’ll recap how the last ten dishes were, as I did after #10:

McLeod/Asafetida: very lush, I think I knew what the asafetida was contributing (a mouth-filling umami), a delicate and expertly made seafood dish
Pandel/Jujube: a little strong for a servable dish (maybe not at The Bristol, though!), but the citrus-bitter jujube balance was dead-on as a solution
Biggers/Beef tendon: I loved the smoked duck salad half, and the tendon soaked up lots of flavor even if I’m still not sure why you want to eat something like a rubber band
Van Camp/Red bean paste: with bacon and an egg on top, totally robust and comfy, like a Longman & Eagle dish (but that’s a different Jared)
Taylor/Fish eyeballs: Hard to say what the fish eyeballs added that oyster liquor, say, didn’t, but it was a good southern-style curry
Segal/Sorghum syrup: Not a carrot cake fan, but this was really a great dessert, and I really liked how sorghum was subtler than molasses in it
Steuer/Banana: good flavor, though rare duck wouldn’t be my choice for a jibarito, which to me wants greasy, slightly crispy meat. Also, banana softens up instead of stiffening like plantains.
Izard/Confectioners Sugar: Totally a Girl & The Goat dish, big hearty flavor with a lot of sweet and savory happening at once.
Zweiban/Tamarind: as I wrote at the time, the first one I’ve really thought of making. Simple roast chicken with a slightly bitter/orange marinade, what’s not to love?
McDonald/Miso: I liked the spring roll a lot, charred shrimp with a little Asian tinge, but I thought the dipping sauce was overkill.

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