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05.05.10 by  

Up Your Cool Factor With Rice Wine Vinegar

No, that’s not a typo. We’ve citified this virgin sibling of sake and made her the star of her own patio party.

As much as we revere the sake bomb, we knew there must be a less “fratboy” way to enjoy rice wine. We uncovered Nihonshu’s little sister, rice wine vinegar — who, lets just say, really knows her way around a Japanese menu — and decided to dedicate our next Asian-themed patio BBQ to the sweet, mild condiment. That evening, we chilled shu-style, and never once were moved to scream, “sake bomb!”

Cole slaw that's chic enough to bring to your next food orgy thanks to a smack of rice wine vinegar.

The Menu:

Cabbage Salad with Ginger Vinaigrette

This ginger vinaigrette gives coleslaw a sweet Asian flare incorporating rice wine vinegar.

Toss in a large bowl with:

  • 1/2 red cabbage, shredded
  • 1/2 green cabbage, shredded
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and grated
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 jalapeno, seeds removed, diced

Side Dish

  1. Asparagus got a quick Asian makeover. We gave the stalks an open-fire charring to sweeten the flavor and give a soft-crisp texture combo.
  2. Wash dry and trim the ends off 1 pound asparagus, place in a medium bowl.
  3. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil and 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar.
  4. Sprinkle with kosher salt and a small pinch or white pepper, toss.
  5. Grill over medium heat, turning until tender and browned.

Shrimp

  1. Creating your own teriyaki sauce is simple and highlights the flavors of rice wine vinegar.
  2. Marinate 1 pound de-veined shrimp with 3 tablespoons of soy sauce, 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar and 1 tablespoon granulated sugar in a large sealable storage bag for 20 minutes.
  3. Skewer 1-inch squares of pineapple chunks between each shrimp.
  4. Place on a medium-heat grill and turn when the shrimp starts to turn pink. The second side will cook quickly, be sure not to overcook (cooking with peels keeps shrimp moist inside).

Beef

Try to play it cool when you bite into one of Bobby Flay’s Kalbi Korean BBQ Short Ribs. The brown sugar- and rice vinegar-soaked meat has a tangy-sweet tenderness that works over your taste buds.

Dessert

  1. Grill peaches marinated in rice wine vinegar.
  2. Serve over vanilla ice cream.

Sip

Don’t forget to pop open a bottle of cold refreshing sake. We have been sipping this Nishida Densu.

There you have it: An entire Asian BBQ incorporating rice wine vinegar into every recipe — we told you she can work the room. Your turn to hunt down an experience and pass the bottle…