Get a Taste of the LuckyRice Festival in N.Y.C.

03/18/2015 at 03:43 PM ET

LuckyRice
Courtesy of Luckyrice

Wouldn’t it be great to eat an array of authentic Asian delicacies without having to endure the 10-plus hour flight? Well, now there’s a way.

On March 20th, the 6th annual LuckyRice Festival Grand Feast returns to N.Y.C.  Held at the Mandarin Oriental hotel, the event was founded by Danielle Chang, a Taiwanese-born New Yorker, who wanted to showcase the amazing diversity and complexity of Asian food.

The first festival — promoted by high-profile chef sponsors such as Daniel Boulud, Marcus Samuelsson, David Chang — was held in 2009 and has since grown to include events across the country. This year, over 15,000 attendees are expected.

In celebration of the event, PEOPLE caught up with Michael Ferraro, executive chef at Delicatessen in N.Y.C., who will be part of this year’s festivities. He shares his recipe for chilled English pea soup, which he’s serving along with its perfect cocktail pairing, the Sapphire East: Feeling Sheep(ish).

The drink — a sweet combination of ginger syrup, chamomile tea and Bombay Sapphire East gin — commemorates the Year of The Sheep (and honors the tender, calm characteristics of sheep and goats everywhere.)

LuckyRice
Courtesy of Luckyrice

Sapphire East: Feeling Sheep(ish)
2 oz. chamomile-infused gin
¾ oz. ginger syrup
¼  oz. simple syrup
¾ oz. fresh lemon
2 oz. soda water
2 droppers Bittercube Bolivar Bitters
Garnish: 2 lemon peels inserted into the glass

Fill collins glass with ice. Add ingredients and garnish with lemon peels.

LuckyRice
Courtesy of Luckyrice

Chilled English Pea Soup
9 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, divided
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 shallot, chopped
1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
1 lb. English peas, cleaned
½ cup white wine
2 qts. vegetable stock
½ cup spinach
½ lb. peekytoe crab (can substitute with lump crab meat or shrimp)
2 tbsp. Japanese mayonnaise (can substitute with regular mayonnaise)
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tbsp. minced chives
2 tbsp. Greek or Icelandic yogurt
1 tbsp. chopped mint

1. In a medium size sauce pan add 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, garlic, shallot and thyme. Sauté over medium heat for 2 minutes.
2. Add peas. Sauté over high heat for another 2 minutes.
3. Add white wine. Continue to cook over high heat until wine is evaporated. Add vegetable stock and simmer over medium heat for 25 minutes.
4. Stir in spinach then immediately remove from heat. Chill over ice bath. After cooled, strain peas and remove broth. Reserve both.
5. In a high speed blender add half the amount of pea mixture and a cup and a half of liquid, blend over high speed adjusting consistency with broth as needed. Blend in with the broth 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil.
6. Pass soup through fine sift, season with salt and pepper. Repeat process for remaining peas.

For Crab Salad:
1. In a medium size mixing bowl add crab meat, mayonnaise, lemon juice, 1 tbsp olive oil and minced chives. Season with salt and pepper.
2. Fold mixture together. Reserve for plating.

Plating:
1. Add desired amount of soup with 2 tbsp of crab mixture and 1 tbsp of yogurt. Garnish with mint.

—Maria Yagoda

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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms
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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms

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On a clear day, you can see forever—or at least that’s the wicked thought behind L.A. designer Agi Berliner’s transparent idea: see-through jeans. Exhibitionists notwithstanding, most folks wear them over bathing suits or as attention-getting evening wear with halters, garter belts and body stockings. Created for the disco crowd, the $34 jeans are selling like, well, hot pants. In just six weeks, 25,000 pairs have already been sold in such major department store chains as Macy’s, Bonwit’s and Saks.

“What’s limiting American designers is that we’re afraid to do something different,” says Berliner, 32, a Hungarian émigré who fled with her family to the U.S. in 1956. Agi thought up the gimmick in London while marveling at the way plastics were being employed by designers of punk fashion. In her L.A. office, where she designs for La Parisienne junior sportswear, Agi spent five days on the phone and six weeks testing to come up with the right plastic.

Agi herself tried out the French-cut jeans with the zipper in front, and quickly found several problems: Some plastics tore away from stitching, others wouldn’t bend and all fogged with perspiration. The ideal material proved to be a vinyl supplied by a bookbinder. The steam was eliminated with a series of vents behind the knees and in the crotch. “They’re no hotter than polyester pants,” claims Agi, “and if you wear them with tights, they won’t stick to your legs.”

Whatever the discomfort and despite the problem of Saturday night feverishness, discomaniacs report one major advantage of the plastic pants: no laundry bills. To keep Berliner’s see-through jeans clear, all the wearer needs is a little Windex.

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