Eye Candy: Peter Chang's Cucumbers Stuffed with Shrimp and Pine NutsMaggie Borden
February 18, 2016
Chinese New Year is always a spirited celebration at the Beard House, and this year’s fusion-inspired feast was no exception, featuring a first-class roster of D.C.-area chefs preparing a jubilant pan-Asian repast. Peter Chang, Scott Drewno, and K.N. Vinod rang in the Year of the Monkey with a menu spanning from Sichuan Province to California to the Subcontinent, enticing Beard House diners with flavors spicy, sour, savory, and sweet. Chang, known for his elevated take on Sichuan cuisine and penchant for peppercorns, eased guests into the meal with a cooling canapé of cucumbers stuffed with shrimp and pine nuts. These bite-sized canoes of crunch mixed the subtle sweetness of the shrimp with the toasted earthiness of the pine nuts, all underpinned by the refreshing cucumber. With this singular hors d’oeuvre Chang adeptly set the stage for the decadent dumplings, masala, potstickers, and hot-and-numbing sauce that made this a flavor-packed fête to remember.
Maggie Borden is assistant editor at the James Beard Foundation. Find her on Instagram.