Pork Tsukune and Shishito Skewer with Tare Glaze over Warm Lentil Salad

Menu PartAppetizer/Small Plate
Cuisine TypeAsian

Chef Chandon Clenard
Culinary Director for Guckenheimer at Google
San Mateo, Calif.

The popularity of the blended burger—a mix of ground meat with chopped mushrooms—has spawned other blended recipes like this Japanese-style meatball called tsukune. Chef Clenard combines ground pork with cremini mushrooms and quinoa, cutting back on the meat portion for a more plant-forward spin. He adds more plants to the mix by serving the skewered tsukune with a lentil salad.


Pickled radishes
6 oz. rice vinegar
1 tbsp. honey
2 tbsp. salt
1 star anise
1½ oz. watermelon radishes, julienned
1½ oz. daikon, julienned

3 oz. white quinoa
1 cup water
Salt, to aste

Roasted onions and mushrooms
2 oz. yellow onions
2 oz. crimini mushrooms
1 oz. canola oil

12 oz. ground pork
2 oz. egg
1 tsp. minced fresh garlic
1 tsp. minced peeled ginger
.2 oz. porcini mushroom powder
.2 oz. crushed red chili flakes
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. ground black pepper
2 tbsp. tamari or soy sauce
5 oz. shishito peppers

Lentil salad
16 oz. green lentils
1 qt. salted water
1 tbsp. canola oil
3 oz. mustard greens, stemmed and cut into 1½-in. pieces
3 oz. mizuna
3 oz. red cabbage, julienned
Salt and pepper, to taste

1 tsp. honey
.1 oz. white miso
½ oz. yuzu juice
1 tsp. salt
¼ oz. shiso leaves, chiffonade

Tare glaze
¼ cup tamari or soy sauce
1/8 cup mirin
1/8 cup sake
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1-in. piece fresh ginger, peeled
1 green onion, chopped
1 tsp. turbinado sugar


1. Prepare pickled radishes: In large saucepan over medium-high heat, bring rice vinegar, honey, salt and star anise to a boil. Place watermelon radish and daikon in a bowl; pour hot liquid over them. Let sit for at least 1 hour. Keep cool.
2. Prepare quinoa: In saucepan, bring salted water to a boil. Add quinoa and reduce heat to low. Cover and steam for 10 minutes. Uncover and stir quinoa thoroughly. Cover and steam for 10 to 15 minutes longer or until quinoa is cooked through and is not mushy. Remove quinoa, straining any remaining liquid; transfer to a sheet pan. Set aside and cool completely.
3. Prepare roasted onions and mushrooms: Combine onions and mushrooms in small mixing bowl with 1 ounce oil and  pinch of salt and black pepper. Mix thoroughly until all ingredients are evenly distributed and coated with oil.
4. Transfer to sheet tray. Roast in 400 F combi-oven with fan on medium-high for 8 to 10 minutes or until mushrooms and onions are cooked through and well caramelized to golden brown. Remove from oven and cool completely.
5. Prepare tsukune: In large mixing bowl, combine ground pork, cooked quinoa, roasted mushrooms and onion, egg, garlic, ginger, porcini powder, chili flakes, salt, black pepper and tamari. Mix until all ingredients are evenly distributed.
6. Form mixture into ten 1-ounce meatballs or patties; place on sheet pan. Briefly set aside.
7. On 4-inch bamboo skewers, thread 1 whole shishito pepper followed by one tsukune. Place complete skewer onto sheet pan. Repeat process until the shishito and tsukune are all skewered. Set completed skewers aside and keep cool until ready to grill.
9. Prepare lentil salad: Bring 1 quart of generously salted water to a boil in medium saucepan. Add all the lentils and boil for 10 to 15 minutes or until cooked through but not mushy. Strain and keep hot.
10. Heat large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add oil and cabbage; saute quickly to wilt. Stir in mustard greens, then mizuna. Saute a few seconds to wilt greens. Season with salt and pinch of black pepper; combine with cooked lentils and set aside.
11. Prepare vinaigrette: In bowl, whisk together honey, miso, yuzu and salt. While continuing to whisk, slowly drizzle in remaining oil. Stir in shiso leaves and keep cool. Fold about ¼ cup vinaigrette into lentil mixture. Keep warm for plating.
12. Prepare tare glaze: In medium saucepan, combine tamari, mirin, sake, garlic, ginger, green onion and sugar; bring to a boil. Remove from heat; cover and let stand at least 15 minutes. Strain and cool.
13. To grill skewers: Preheat a grill over high heat. Grill skewers on each side, basting with tare glaze, for 2 minutes or until the pepper and tsukune are well caramelized and cooked through. Keep hot for plating.
14. To plate: In 10-ounce soup bowl, mound 1/3 cup lentil salad. Top with 1 grilled skewer. Garnishing with pickled radishes.

Photo courtesy of Culinary Institute of America

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