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Ruby grapefruit, asparagus, cashew and coconut salad with chilli jam

"On my first visit to Jimmy Liks in Potts Point, I was in gastronomic nirvana. One dish that really stood out was their ruby grapefruit, asparagus, cashew and coconut salad. I'd love to make this at home. Would you ask chef Adam Woodfield for the recipe?"
Cathy Croft, via email

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You'll need

12 asparagus, blanched and cut into thirds on the diagonal (see note) 8 garlic chive flower stalks, blanched and cut into thirds 1 ruby grapefruit, peeled and segmented 2 Lebanese cucumbers, thinly sliced lengthways 4 red shallots, thinly sliced lengthways 75 gm (½ cup) roasted cashews 2 long red chillies, seeds removed and cut into julienne 6 green onions, thinly sliced 4 kaffir lime leaves, thinly sliced ½ cup loosely packed Thai basil leaves 20 gm young coconut flesh, thinly sliced (see note) 2 tbsp coconut cream To serve: fried shallots (see note) and steamed jasmine rice   Chilli jam 10 gm galangal, peeled and thinly sliced 500 ml (2 cups) vegetable oil 1 Spanish onion, thinly sliced 8 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced 3 dried long red chillies, seeds removed 12 gm (2 tbsp) dried shrimp 1 tbsp palm sugar To taste: fish sauce To taste: tamarind water (see note)   Chilli and lime dressing 20 gm palm sugar, finely grated 2 kaffir lime leaves, coarsely torn 2 tsp fish sauce 2 tsp tamarind water (see note) 2 tsp lime juice 2 tbsp chicken stock or water, to dilute


  • 01
  • For chilli jam, preheat grill on low. Place galangal on an oven tray and grill, without colouring, for 15 minutes or until crisp, set aside. Heat oil in a wok or saucepan over medium heat, add onion and cook, without colouring, for 5 minutes or until soft. Remove with a slotted spoon and place in a bowl. Cook garlic in oil for 1 minute or until soft, remove with a slotted spoon and add to onion. Cook chillies for a few seconds or until crisp, remove with a slotted spoon and add to onion mixture. Cook shrimp for a few seconds or until crisp, remove with a slotted spoon and add to onion mixture. Strain oil and reserve. Place onion mixture and galangal in a blender and process to a smooth paste. Heat 100ml of strained oil in a heavy-based saucepan over low heat, add palm sugar and cook, stirring, until sugar dissolves. Add paste and season to taste with fish sauce and tamarind water. Remove and cool. Makes about 200gm. Chilli jam can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.
  • 02
  • For chilli and lime dressing, heat half the chilli jam in a saucepan over medium heat, add palm sugar and lime leaves and cook gently, stirring, for 3 minutes or until sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat, remove lime leaves and add remaining ingredients except chicken stock. Dilute dressing with 1-2 tbsp chicken stock or until a drizzling consistency.
  • 03
  • In a bowl, combine asparagus, garlic chives, grapefruit, cucumber, shallot, cashews and chilli, drizzle with half the dressing and toss gently to combine. Add green onion, lime leaves and basil leaves, toss gently to combine, divide between plates, scatter with coconut flesh, drizzle with coconut cream and remaining dressing and scatter with fried shallots. Serve immediately with steamed rice to the side.

Note When available, chef Adam Woodfield uses a combination of wing beans and asparagus. Young coconut, a drinking coconut, is available from Asian food stores and select supermarkets. Fried shallots are available from Asian food stores and select supermakets. To make tamarind water, dissolve 1 tbsp tamarind pulp or purée, available from supermarkets, in 100ml of warm water, strain and reserve liquid.

At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people

Featured in

Dec 2006

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