Bee-hind!  That is what chefs yell while walking behind anyone and everyone on the line in the kitchen to prevent spills, cuts, and snarls. It’s also a layman’s term for moving forward and onward to bigger and better things in life.  Back home in New York City, today I had the pleasure of meeting up with Angela, a dear friend, for a celebratory dinner.  She and I each had a lot of catching up to do with each other after four months of tending to our busyness.

EN Japanese Brasserie -- LogoRecently, at work she had just been promoted from fashion production assistant to now designer, and I was commemorating having stepped into chefdom.  We chose EN Japanese Brasserie as our gathering place.  Angela and her boyfriend had previously visited this restaurant, and knowing that I’m always open to exploring new ideas and venues, she wanted me to experience this Japanese hotspot.  I had forgotten to bring my camera, but Angela graciously took these photos.
Photo Courtesy:  Angela Wong

It seems like we ordered almost everything vegan off their rather extensive tapas-style menu:

Interior 1 Interior 2
Interior 3 Menu
Watermelon Avocado Arame Tsukemono
Freshly-Made Silken Tofu Chef's Greens Appetizer
Citrus Sorbet with Grapefruit Slices Trio of Ice Cream
Chef Abe Hiroki En Japanese Brasserie


The predominant taste in each of these dishes was shiso, whether as garnish, in a dressing, pickle or dessert, and it’s quickly become one of my favorite herbs to work with.  Try this simple, refreshing drink just in time for spring.

Hand-Squeezed Pineapple with MintPineapple with Ginger and Shiso
Yield:  2 cups

1 cup pineapple, peeled and cored
1 Tablespoon
freshly grated ginger
2 Tablespoons agave nectar
1 cup filtered water
1 green shiso leaf (As garnish)

Preparation Method

  1. In a high-speed blender, blend pineapple, ginger, agave nectar, and water until smooth.  Strain.
  2. Pour strained liquid into a drinking glass over ice.  Garnish with shiso leaf.  Enjoy!

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