Editor’s note: We seek recipes from Triangle restaurants requested by readers.
Several years ago, I had tamarind-glazed sweet potato wedges at the Weaver Street Market in Carrboro. I enjoyed the dish very much. I wonder if you can get the recipe even though I had the food a while ago.
Miriam Schaul, Raleigh
Whether they’re grabbing a quick bite or lingering over brunch, thousands of people dine from Weaver Street Market’s hot and cold bars every week.
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The original and largest store in Carrboro was remodeled in 2015, when the market more than doubled the size of its hot bar. The kitchen now showcases about 14 daily hot items from a particular region and from the menu of longtime Weaver Street customer favorites, Chef Glenn Lozuke said.
Lozuke spent nine months working with Weaver Street’s staff to develop more than 100 new ethnic recipes. The Ginger Tamarind Sweet Potatoes are part of an Indian menu that also includes red lentil dal, butter beef and curried barley with almonds and raisins.
Lozuke likes his food spicy, from Beef Rendang off the Southeast Asian menu to the Chicken con Crema, a Mexican dish inspired by an employee lunch.
“I pulled from many different sources – people I knew who cooked Indian, had a restaurant, from my Italian background, so many different sources,” Lozuke said. “Some of the best ideas I got from people that I worked with. That’s where I get my energy from, from people around me giving me ideas.”
Despite more than 30 years in the kitchen – previous gigs include Watts Grocery and the James Beard Award-winning restaurant Magnolia Grill in Durham – Lozuke said the work at Weaver Street is challenging and rewarding.
“Fine dining, I loved that experience, but transitionally, I needed something different, and I never thought Weaver was just that fit,” he said. “I came here as a change of pace, but after a year, I just had buy-in (to the co-op principal). … It’s been a really good fit for me, and I’ve had tremendous opportunity there.”
The job also affords him more time with his wife and their teenage son and daughter, all who live in northern Durham.
Customers also love Weaver Street Market in Carrboro for its free music events, which kick off this month:
▪ After Hours: Every Thursday through June 29, 6-8 p.m., 101 E. Weaver St. in Carrboro.Parking is available at Fitch Lumber on North Greensboro Street and the town lots on South Greensboro and West Weaver streets.
▪ Jazz Brunch: 11 a.m.-1 p.m. at 101 E. Weaver St. in Carrboro and at 228 S. Churton St. in Hillsborough. Jazz Brunch events run through Sept. 24 in Hillsborough and Oct. 15 in Carrboro.
Send recipe requests, including your name and city, to Specialty of the House, The News & Observer, P.O. Box 191, Raleigh, N.C. 27602, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Put “Specialty” in the subject line.
Weaver Street Market, 101 E. Weaver St., Carrboro. 919-929-0010, weaverstreetmarket.coop
Ginger Tamarind Sweet Potatoes
Chef Glenn Lozuke said tamarind concentrate is available at Spice Bazaar, 4125 Durham-Chapel Hill Blvd. in Durham. For a quick substitute, blend together 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of brown sugar.
3/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon, plus 1/8 teaspoon Garam Masala
1 teaspoon tamarind concentrate
2 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
2 1/2 tablespoons ginger, minced
2 pounds of sweet potatoes, cleaned well and cut in wedges or cubes
Salt and pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Mix first five ingredients and toss with sweet potatoes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Roast in oven for 30 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
Yield: 2 pounds