Local Chefs Dish On Their Favorite Recipes

Inspired chefs share Winning recipes for oysters, birds, veggies, sides, and cakes, so you can impress your own friends and family.


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Photo By Eric Wolfinger

(Khua Mak Tua Din Sai Katiem)

Fried Red Peanuts With Garlic, Lime Leaves, Chiles, and Iodized salt

Chef: James Syhabout

Restaurants: Commis in Oakland, Old Kan Beer & Co. in Oakland, Hawker Fare in San Francisco, and the forthcoming Hawking Bird in Oakland

Cookbook: Hawker Fare (debuting January 2018)

Why it’s good for get-togethers: “It’s good to bring as a host or hostess gift. You can make it days before. It keeps in mason jars for weeks. If someone shows up early to the party, they can just have some peanuts. It always satisfies and holds you until dinner.’’

(Makes 2 cups)

2 cups shelled peanuts (448 grams), with skins

5 fresh red Thai chiles (7 grams)

⅛ cup (25 grams) peeled garlic cloves

6 makrut lime leaves (2 grams)

⅛ cup (20 grams) canola oil

1 tablespoon (15 grams) iodized salt

Preheat the oven to 350° F. Spread out the peanuts in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through to ensure even toasting—the peanuts should be a light tan color, their red skins dry and papery. Cool the peanuts on the baking sheet.

Meanwhile, combine the chiles, garlic, and lime leaves in a mortar and pound to a coarse paste. Warm the oil in a wok over medium heat, add the chile paste, and sweat until fragrant. Turn up the heat to medium-high, add the peanuts, and fry until you start to notice the toasted aromas of garlic and chiles (you might end up coughing—that’s the sign to turn off the heat). At this point, the pieces of garlic and lime leaves should be crisp. Add the iodized salt and toss to mix thoroughly. Transfer the peanuts to a bowl and allow to cool for a bit before serving with beer and booze. They’ll keep in a sealed container for about one week, but they won’t remain uneaten for that long. Trust me.

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