I came up with this dish during my current residency at Rush Lane and Co in Toronto while searching for a snack that would satisfy the cravings of cocktail-swilling clients that went beyond the lazy route of simply deep-frying something.
I can't take full credit for this celery dish: I wish I was inspired by some innate genius, but, like many of the dishes I do, I got the initial idea from somewhere on the internet. Still, it took a week or so of R&D, during which I tweaked the ratios nine or 10 times to get the balance right.
Furikake is a Japanese condiment that is usually eaten with rice. My version has untraditional ingredients that I believe add a lot of flavour. Buy or borrow a cheap digital scale, as this is one of those recipes that are so infuriatingly inaccurate and annoying when done with tablespoons and teaspoons that they aren't worth making.
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Celery sticks with nutritional yeast furikake, sesame oil and soy
4t toasted sesame oil
4T furikake (recipe follows)
4 celery sticks cut into batons about 7cm x 1.5cm
Soy sauce to taste
Furikake (makes 1L, freeze rest for later use for up to 6 months)
50g nutritional yeast
50g bonito flakes
40g sushi nori , torn into bite size pieces
40g dried anchovy
30g sunflower seeds (crushed into powder in mortar & pestle, coffee grinder or blender)
25g black sesame (crushed into powder in mortar & pestle, coffee grinder or blender)
25g white sesame (crushed into powder in mortar & pestle, coffee grinder or blender)
First, make the furikake. Put the nutritional yeast, bonito flakes, sushi nori, salt and dried anchovy into a food processor and blend until it is a quite fine powder. Mix with rest of ingredients.
Make a paste of seseame oil, water and furikake. Mix in the celery batons, making sure to coat the sticks evenly. Taste: the dish should be quite salty and very umami with a lovely refreshing undertone of the celery. Add soy or more furikake to get the salt level you desire.
Let sit for 10 minutes and then serve as a snack at a cocktail party or just before dinner.