The world is her oyster, and the street is her beat. Susan Feniger’s Los Angeles restaurants—Border Grill and STREET—and the popular “Too Hot Tamales” TV Series (hosted with her longtime collaborator, Mary Sue Milliken) have made her one of the nation’s leading proponents of Latin cooking. But that’s just the beginning of a culinary road that leads all the way to the Far East.
Since 2009, Feniger has gone way beyond her Latin comfort zone, and brought it all together under one big happy tent: street food. At her Hollywood restaurant, STREET she serves up the authentic, fresh, flavor-forward snacks and street treats of Asia, the Near East, and anywhere in between that strikes her fancy and culinary imagination.
In lesser hands that United Nations of flavors could be overly ambitious. But Feniger has done her homework, and knows how to mix and match ingredients with the confidence of a seasoned chef, food sleuth and world traveler. And she loves putting all her favorite finds from East to West on a single menu.
“We now live in such a global world, where there’s less and less differentiation between cultures and their cuisines,” she says. “So many different cultures share similar ingredients and techniques, that it feels natural to move and add ingredients from one cuisine to another.”
For Feniger’s culinary palette, that often means blending ingredients from different countries in ways that work seamlessly to create umami-rich flavor combinations—especially Kikkoman Soy Sauce.
“We use tons of Kikkoman Soy Sauce at our restaurants,” she enthuses. “At Border Grill, we use it in our marinades for steak and fish dishes, in our ceviche, and salad dressings. It not only ties in with authentic Peruvian ingredients, but it also adds rich flavor to all kinds of dishes—even ones where it’s not traditionally found.”
At STREET, where the menu takes a more global turn, a whole range of Kikkoman products come into play in both Asian and non-Asian dishes. “We use a lot of Kikkoman Soy Sauce, as well as Rice Wine Vinegar, Hoisin Sauce and Ponzu Citrus Seasoned Dressing & Sauce,” says Feniger. “I like the flavor and the quality, wherever in the world I’m going with a dish.
For tasty proof, check out these Asian inspired recipes from STREET:
Burmese Gin Thoke Melon Salad
Black Pepper Clams