Ming Tsai on Nightlline

Master chef Ming Tsai gives his take on Thanksgiving and some insight on his background. He had a couple of rules growing up that most of us can relate to. Here’s the rules laid down by the parents, “Son, be anything you want, as long it is a doctor, lawyer, or engineer. Get any grades you want, as long as they are straight A’s. Marry anyone you want, if they are Asian, that would be even better.” Ming Tsai went 0-for-3. Read more about how his path toward engineering at Yale got diverted to the path toward the art of cooking here.

Here’s oure favorite part of the article from Ming Tsai, “My parents … they are doing everything possible to educate me to not become a blue-collar worker but to become a white-collar worker. So I’m doing everything just backwards. And my mom … just big hugs and kisses: ‘Son, I love you, follow your dream, your passion, just promise me you are going to give it 110 percent. Go for it!’ Dad, I looked at Dad, and dad goes, ‘Son, you weren’t going to be a very good engineer anyway. Go cook!'”

Also check out his recent appearances Ming Tsai cooking for kids with allergies and Chef Ming Tsai Makes $10 Dish on NPR

Ming Tsai on Nightlline

8 Treasure Sticky Rice Stuffing Recipe (serves 6)


1 tablespoon minced garlic

1 tablespoon minced ginger

6 cups glutinous rice

1/2 cup diced rehydrated black mushrooms

1/4 cup minced & diced rehydrated dried shrimp

1/4-inch diced la chang (Chinese sausage) (either 1 large or 2 small)

1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced, white and green separated, reserve some of the green for garnish

1/2 cup Shaoxing wine

1 cup edamames or rehydrated yellow soybeans

1 red bell pepper, minced

1 tablespoon Wanjashan oyster sauce, plus more for garnish

Banana leaf

3 lotus leaves (or more banana leaf)

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Canola oil


First make the rice: In a large bowl, combine rice and enough water to cover. Store in fridge overnight. When ready to use, drain rice. Place rice in banana leaf-lined steamer and steam for 1 hour, until rice is cooked but not mushy. When rice is cooked, transfer to a large bowl and discard banana leaf. To make the stuffing: Heat a wok or large saute pan over high heat. Add canola oil and swirl to coat. Saute garlic and ginger until fragrant, then add mushrooms, shrimp and la chang and stir-fry briefly to allow sausage to render a bit. Add scallion whites, deglaze with Shaoxing and reduce completely. Add edamames, red bell pepper, scallion greens and oyster sauce and stir-fry. Pour mixture on top of sticky rice in large bowl. Mix well and check seasoning. Chill in refrigerator until cool enough to handle. When chilled, cut lotus leaf in half and place about 1 cup sticky rice stuffing in center. Fold lotus leaf around stuffing and wrap like a package. Place packages in prepared bamboo steamer, seam-side down and steam for 15-20 minutes, until heated through. To serve, place 1 package on each plate, slit open on top and push filling up into opening from sides of package. Garnish with reserved scallion greens and a drizzle of oyster sauce.

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