20 cultural fusion dishes

Celebrate the global flavors of the West with these inventive culinary mash-ups

Roasted Delicata Squash with Honey, Pomegranate Seeds, and Pepitas

Photo by Yunhee Kim; written by Amy Machnak

Roasted Delicata Squash with Honey, Pomegranate Seeds, and Pepitas

The skin of delicata squash is tender when roasted and very flavorful, so try it along with the flesh.

Recipe: Roasted Delicata Squash with Honey, Pomegranate Seeds, and Pepitas

Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts and Bacon

Photo by Yunhee Kim; written by Amy Machnak

Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts and Bacon

Chef Andrew Spurgin uses fresh chestnuts when they’re in season in fall and winter. He cuts them in half and boils them quickly to soften, then pops the chestnut flesh out of the shell before roasting.

Recipe: Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts and Bacon

Wasabi Mashed Potatoes

Photo by Yunhee Kim; written by Amy Machnak

Wasabi Mashed Potatoes

Chef Shigefumi Tachibe of L.A.'s Chaya Restaurant serves these mashed potatoes topped with crumbled bacon, but our recipe uses fresh shiso leaves for a lighter flavor.

Recipe: Wasabi Mashed Potatoes

Thai-Style Sausage and Rice Dressing

Photo by Yunhee Kim; written by Amy Machnak

Thai-Style Sausage and Rice Dressing

Thanawat Bates, chef at Denver's The Brown Palace Hotel, uses Japanese sticky rice, but any type of sticky rice will work. You can also use a rice steamer instead of a bamboo one.

Recipe: Thai-Style Sausage and Rice Dressing

Cabbage, Cashew, and Fennel Salad

Photo by Yunhee Kim; written by Amy Machnak

Cabbage, Cashew, and Fennel Salad

Fresh chiles give this slaw a clean flavor and make it a nice, light element in a hearty meal.

Recipe: Cabbage, Cashew, and Fennel Salad

Spiced Cranberry Relish

Photo by Yunhee Kim; written by Amy Machnak

Spiced Cranberry Relish

This relish is incredibly spicy, but the raw cranberries, cilantro, and chiles add bright freshness. If you’re sensitive to spice, reduce the chiles by half.

Recipe: Spiced Cranberry Relish

Beef with Tomatoes, Pasta, and Chili Sauce

Photo by James Carrier; written by Stephanie Spencer

Beef with Tomatoes, Pasta, and Chili Sauce

While researching a story on Peruvian cooking, we came across tallarín saltado, a popular fusion dish that combines Asian stir-fry techniques with beef, fresh tomatoes, Asian chili sauce, and Italian spaghetti. It was a hit here at Sunset: It's fast and easy, and you can substitute other meats, vegetables, or different kinds of pasta.

Recipe: Beef with Tomatoes, Pasta, and Chili Sauce

 

 

Kimchi and Avocado Quesadillas

Photo by Annabelle Breakey; written by Stephanie Spencer

Kimchi and Avocado Quesadillas

The spicy flavor of kimchi makes it a natural filling for quesadillas and a good contrast with mild, buttery avocado. You could also add grilled chicken or shrimp.

Recipe: Kimchi and Avocado Quesadillas

Japanese Fish Tacos

Photo by Leigh Beisch; written by Stephanie Spencer

Japanese Fish Tacos

Here we've fused classic Japanese flavors like ponzu and wasabi with Mexican-style tacos.

Recipe: Japanese Fish Tacos

Smoked Salmon Breakfast Burrito

Photo by Iain Bagwell; written by Stephanie Spencer

Smoked Salmon Breakfast Burrito

The cream cheese and salmon in these wraps make for a decadent breakfast that's a play on bagels and lox, burrito-style. If you're in the mood for meat, you could easily substitute bacon or sausage for the fish.

Recipe:  Smoked Salmon Breakfast Burrito

Turkey, Bacon, and Avocado Summer Rolls

Photo by Jeffrey Cross; written by Stephanie Spencer

Turkey, Bacon, and Avocado Summer Rolls

Like a turkey club, only lighter and fresher. To turn these rolls into a fun party appetizer, set out the fillings and a metal bowl of warm (about 100°) water, and let your guests roll their own.

Recipe: Turkey, Bacon, and Avocado Summer Rolls

Thai Shredded Chicken and Strawberry Salad

Photo by Annabelle Breakey; written by Stephanie Spencer

Thai Shredded Chicken and Strawberry Salad

Thai-flavors abound in this unusual twist on a chicken salad that adds strawberries for a bit of sweetness. The secret ingredient? Fish sauce. It provides a savory, salty element that unites the herbs and fruit without tasting a bit "fishy."

Recipe: Thai Shredded Chicken and Strawberry Salad

Chipotle-Corn Mashed Potatoes

Photo by Leigh Beisch; written by Stephanie Spencer

Chipotle-Corn Mashed Potatoes

Adding chipotle chiles and corn give classic mashed potatoes a fun, spicy, Mexican spin.

Recipe:  Chipotle-Corn Mashed Potatoes

Chorizo, Red Pepper, and Potato Galette with Arugula

Photo by Annabelle Breakey; written by Stephanie Spencer

Chorizo, Red Pepper, and Potato Galette with Arugula

Although galettes are French in origin, we've filled this galette with Spanish favorites like chorizo, red peppers, and manchego cheese for a quick and easy lunch or dinner.

Recipe: Chorizo, Red Pepper, and Potato Galette with Arugula

Turkey Sandwiches with Caramelized Onions and Charmoula Mayo

Photo by Annabelle Breakey; written by Stephanie Spencer

Turkey Sandwiches with Caramelized Onions and Charmoula Mayo

A messy sandwich, but it's a treat. Warm Moroccan spices mix with sweet onions to give leftover turkey a fresh spin. Try it with a glass of Gewürztraminer.

Recipe:  Turkey Sandwiches with Caramelized Onions and Charmoula Mayo

Tandoori Naan Chicken Sandwiches

Photo by Annabelle Breakey; written by Stephanie Spencer

Tandoori Naan Chicken Sandwiches

Combine two Indian classics–tandoori chicken and naan–in a flavorful twist on a chicken sandwich topped with mint, cilantro, onion, tomatoes, and feta cheese.

Recipe: Tandoori Naan Chicken Sandwiches

Sake Soy Guacamole

Photo by Annabelle Breakey; written by Stephanie Spencer

Sake Soy Guacamole

We love our guacamole here in the West and we especially love this Asian-inspired spin that's loosely based on a recipe from Hawaiian chef Alan Wong. Serve it with daikon sticks, radishes, or taro chips.

Recipe: Sake Soy Guacamole

Chai-Spiced Shortbread Cookies

Photo by Alex Farnum; written by Stephanie Spencer

Chai-Spiced Shortbread Cookies

Fuse classic, buttery English shortbread cookies with the rich, deep flavors of Indian chai and you've got a cookie that all your friends will be wanting the recipe for.

Recipe: Chai-Spiced Shortbread Cookies

 

Potato Salad Niçoise

Photo by Rachel Weill;; written by Stephanie Spencer

Potato Salad Niçoise

We've taken classic salad niçoise flavors like olives, green beans, and onions and added them to classic American potato salad for a fresh spin on the picnic favorite.

Recipe: Potato Salad Niçoise

Indian Horchata

Photo by Thomas J. Story; written by Stephanie Spencer

Indian Horchata

If you've tried horchata, that creamy, ultra-refreshing rice drink served at taquerias, just imagine it with an Indian spin, and you've got the cooler served at All Spice in San Mateo, California (allspicerestaurant.com; they also add a saffron thread or two to each glass, and sometimes, a splash of half-and-half). For classic Mexican horchata, just use regular white rice and 2 cinnamon sticks, and omit the cardamom.

Recipe: Indian Horchata

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