Friday, December 22, 2017

Miami Design District & Ghee Indian Cuisine

The Miami Design District is a creative neighborhood and shopping destination dedicated to innovative fashion, design, art, architecture and dining. Once made up primarily of old low-rise warehouses converted into retail spaces, art galleries, restaurants and cafés, the Design District gained international attention as a creative neighbourhood when it served as the birthplace of the Design Miami and plays a major role in Art Basel Miami Beach and Miami Art Week. Beginning the evening at Primary, a small contemporary art gallery which promotes various forms of aesthetic expression from both established and emerging contemporary artists, we then went to opening night of Miami's new Institute of Contemporary Art with it's beautiful outdoor sculpture garden which hosted many colourful Miami celebrities, followed by dinner at Ghee. Using locally sourced ingredients and fresh produce from their farm, Ghee Indian Kitchen elevates traditional Indian cuisine to a new level, serving authentic Gujarat-inspired dishes created with a modern twist. The menu changes daily depending on the harvest from the restaurant-owned farm, Rancho Patel, as well as produce from our local fishermen and farms. Owned and operated by Chef Niven Patel and wife Shivani Patel, Ghee serves the very best Indian cuisine in Miami. “Ghee means pure and has a symbolic meaning both spiritually and in the kitchen of an Indian home,” says Chef Niven Patel. “I want to share with my guests true Indian cuisine with dishes that incorporate modern techniques with traditional Indian-style cooking.” Enjoying chef Patel's tasting menu, Ghee was one of the culinary highlights of our fours days in Miami, wonderfully organized by my dear friends Manita and Randy.

Opening Night at Primary Gallery in Miami's Design District

Detail of of painting at Primary

Foil wrapped trees as part of an Art Basel art installation in Miami's Design District  of Paradise Plaza

Opening Night of The Institute of Contemporary Art in Miami with the two "sisters"

Our server opening the first of many bottles of cava

While opening the bottle of cava our server explained the tasting menu at Ghee, which our table of six decided was the best idea to be able to sample many of the restaurants signature dishes

2014 Llopart Brut Reserva Cava from Catalonia, Spain 

Miami to Mumbai cocktail with Gin, turmeric, pink peppercorn, grated ginger and pomegranate seeds

Indian Taj Mahal Lager Beer

Dahi Vada with lentil fritters, date chutney, yogurt and pomegranate seeds

Steamed Green Millet with cilantro

Crisp Pani Puri served filled with sprouted moong sprouts and beets served with green water

Crispy Cauliflower with paneer, pickled shiitake and lettuce

Shortrib Uttapam with roasted tomato, coconut, fresh herbs and curry leaf

Yellowfin Tuna Bhel with avocado, Rancho Patel tomato, puffed rice and charred vegetables

Smoked Duck Confit Samosa and Backyard Pakoras with taro leaf, sweet onion and calabaza served with green mango and cranberry chutney

Charred Ribs with cranberry chutney, scallions and sliced peppers

Baby Eggplant with yukon potato and heirloom tomato

Channa Masala with black tea, ginger and avocado

Brussel Sprouts with dates and shallots 

Smoked Lamb Neck with chickpeas and herbs

Chicken Tikka Masala with heirloom tomato and roasted pepper

Grain Naan

Turmeric Marinated Local Swordfish with mustard seeds, potato and tomato broth

Lemon Rice with sweet onions and peanuts

Dessert of Mango Ginger Iced Cream, Chocolate Cake and Cumin Cookies

Chefs Pushkar Marathe (L) and Niven Patel (R)

Ghee kitchen staff hamming it up before the camera

The outdoor neon sign of Ghee in Miami's Design District

Shrimp & Lychee Ceviche with Coconut, Ginger & Lime 
Serves 4
Recipe courtesy of Chef Niven Patel

1 lb Florida Royal Red or Key West Pink shrimp
1/2 dozen fresh lychees, pitted and halved
1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
2 tbsp minced cilantro
1/2 small red onion, shaved
Juice of three limes
Kosher salt and freshly-cracked black pepper to taste

Ginger Coconut Milk:
1 can coconut milk
2 tbsp agave
1 whole serrano pepper, grated
1 small thumb of ginger, grated

Place a small saucepan over low heat and steep coconut milk, agave, serrano pepper and ginger for 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and let sit for another 20 minutes. Strain the liquid through a chinois or fine strainer, thin with 1/2 cup water, and let cool completely. Keeps covered in the refrigerator for 2 weeks.

Over high heat, bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a rolling boil. Add the shrimp, poaching for 1 minute, drain and set aside to cool. In a large bowl add the cooled shrimp, lychee, bell pepper, cilantro, onion, lime juice, and salt and pepper. Toss in 1/2 cup of the ginger coconut milk until well-coated and juicy. Serve immediately.

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