Meet Jasmine Lukuku, the blogger behind The Blenderist. You might think from the name that her blog is all about smoothies—and while she does make killer ones, this Vancouver-based blog covers everything from design and raw foods to wine and how she conquered her fear of raw fish and became an avid sushi eater. Her Tuna Tataki Salad—a recipe that got us excited this week—features beautifully seared slices of albacore tuna served with leafy greens and edamame seeds. Her salad is the perfect choice to eat as we transition from summer into the fall with its warming ginger, sweet honey, and smooth sake.
Here are a few words from Jasmine:
I started blogging when I was on stress leave from a job that I hated. During that period, I needed a hobby to keep me busy without stressing me out. I had started sharing some of my recipes on Facebook and Instagram and was getting good feedback. The positive reinforcement inspired me to learn more about food blogging. I'm the kind of person that has to go DEEP when she is interested in a topic. I ended up going down the rabbit hole and learned a ton about the business of blogging. I thought, "I can do this!"
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I tend to be inspired by technique. When I read about a cooking or baking method that I've never tried, I just have to try it. I get really excited about the science. It makes my kitchen feel like a lab. That is why I bake a lot. I love the measured consideration required to pull off some of the more complicated desserts.
Growing up in Vancouver, I've been exposed to a variety of Asian cuisines. My favorites are Japanese, Thai, and Indian. These are my comfort foods. I love aromatic spices, the zing of vinegar, and subtle sweetness. Tuna Tataki was a gateway dish for me. I was afraid of raw fish until I tried Tuna Tataki. The light sear on the tuna and the flavorful dressing made it more approachable. It feels like a pivotal dish in my life. I also wanted an excuse to buy some nice sake from a local sake maker. I put 1 tablespoon into the dressing and drank the rest with the salad! The dressing includes toasted sesame oil, grated ginger, sake, honey, soy sauce, ponzu and black pepper. It has a good balance of nutty, sweet, bright and peppery.
Confession, my Tuna Tataki recipe is actually my boyfriend's tuna tataki recipe. I tweaked it a little bit, but I have to give him credit for the dressing. He's half-Japanese and he's introduced me to a lot of amazing foods and ingredients that I didn't grow up eating. I often defer to him when I'm developing something with a Japanese vibe.