Monday, October 28, 2013

Spiced Red Lentils with Caramelized Onions

This was a great dinner and totally worth the time it takes to caramelize the onions.  The sweetness of the onions really brings this dinner from simple super to great dinner.  If you add a garden salad on the side you have a complete meal!

The flavors were not overpowering but just a hint above subtle.  If you're new to Indian flavors, this would be a great recipe to start with.  If you enjoy Indian cuisine, feel free to up the spices to meet your palate desires, or just know it's a little on the muted side (something I quite like).  I used half red and half green/brown lentils when I made this the first time and it was still great, but having made it more times, I prefer all red lentils.  If you choose to go with green/brown lentils, just know the simmering time will be longer.

When you look at the directions, don't shy away from all the steps -- it may look like a lot, but it's really not.  You essentially caramelize the onions, and while you're waiting for those to brown you cook the lentils and measure out the spices.  It's really quite simple and will take about 45 minutes from start to finish.

If you're looking for an even simpler Indian dish with no caramelized onions or spinach, try this Red Lentil Dal.

Spiced Red Lentils with Caramelized Onions
serves 6
2 large onions, halved and cut into thin half moons
1 1/2 cup dry red lentils, rinsed well and drained
3 bay leaves
1/2 tsp dry ginger powder
3/4 tsp ground turmeric
1 1/2 tsp coriander powder
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 TBLS minced garlic
10 oz frozen box chopped spinach, thawed OR 15 oz fresh, chopped
4 cups cooked brown rice
salt and pepper to taste

-- Saute onions (with oil or broth) in a large skillet until caramelized (about 30 minutes) -- stir occasionally
-- Meanwhile, heat lentils with 4 1/2 cups water and bay leaves.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer about 10 minutes until lentils are fully cooked and starting to fall apart.  Take off heat when done, but do not drain!
-- When onions are done, take half out and set aside in a small bowl.  Add all the spices to the remaining onions in the skillet and heat for 1-2 minutes until fragrant.
-- Add chopped spinach to skillet and heat til wilted if using fresh , 3-4 minutes.  Stir/fold if needed.
-- Once spinach is wilted, add onion/spinach mixture to the lentil and stir to combine.  Season with salt and pepper to taste if desired.
-- Serve over rice and top with remaining caramelized onions.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Filipino Pancit and Eggplant in Adobo Sauce

I'm part of a unique book club.  At least, it's not like any other book club I've ever heard about or been a part of.  It's a book club that picks the books based on the origin or the story (and preferably a book that talks about the food common to the specific locale!).  When we meet to discuss the book, we all pick something to make from the book.  It's genius.

We read The Mango Bride a month or so ago, and I chose to make Pancit -- a very traditional Filipino dish that is most commonly found at birthday celebrations due to the long noodles the signify long life.  One of Brittany's close friends is Filipino and while I didn't get the exact recipe from her, I did get the traditional cooking method, which was elusive on the internet.

I don't have any specific site to point you to as I took 3 different recipes and took aspects of each I thought I liked, tweaked things, added my own preferences, and then changed things as I cooked.

Everyone at book club really enjoyed the dish and my own family really enjoyed the leftovers, so I considered it an all-around score!  Oh, and did I mention it comes together super fast once you have everything chopped?  It does.  Double score!

Pancit [Filipino]
serves 6-8
  • 1 8oz pk brown rice stick noodles (also called Maifun -- like these)
  • 11/2 cups thinly sliced onion
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 cup juilenned carrots (packed)
  • 8 oz pack chopped baby bellas
  • 1 little bag (6-8 oz) sugar snap peas
  • 4 cups thinely sliced green cabbage
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce 
  • garnish: chopped/sliced scallions and lemon wedges (a must!)
--  In a large wok or dutch oven, saute the onion and garlic 5-7 minutes until tender.
-- Add the carrots, mushrooms, peas, and cabbage and saute 3-4 minutes until the cabbage starts to wilt.
-- Add the broth and bring to a boil.  Once it starts to boil, fully submerge the noodles and cover the pot for 2 minutes.
-- Lower heat to low and carefully stir in the noodles.
-- After a couple minutes, add the celery and keep stirring so the noodles loosen up, don't stick or burn.
-- Heat until noodles are gone and the liquid is almost all gone (you want everything to move pretty well)
-- Either throw the scallions in at the last minute, and stir to incorporate, or serve them as garnish.
-- Serve each plate with lemon wedges to be squeezed on!

Another dish I tried to make (and failed at the first attempt!) was this Eggplant in Adobo Sauce!  The concept was great, but I didn't have a great recipe to work from.  After looking at a few other recipes and sites, I made it again and liked it.  The consensus: we like Filipino food! 

We ate this with a creamy vegetable soup and it paired very nicely.

Adobo Eggplant
Serves 4-6
  • 6 cups cubed eggplant (1 lb)
  • 3 cups chopped onion
  • 4 crushed cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup rice water or vegetable broth
  • 2-3 bay leaves (2 large, or 3 smallish)
  • 2 tsp sugar, or to taste (optional)
  • 2-3 cups cooked brown rice
-- In a large skillet, saute onion and garlic until tender -- 5-7 minutes.
-- Add remaining ingredients (except sugar) and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until eggplant is cooked. 
-- Taste and season with sugar and pepper if desired.
-- Serve over cooked brown rice

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Tortilla Soup

Another winning soup from Brittany's kitchen!

Tortilla soup has always been a favorite in our household and among guests.  I used to make a chicken version that was delicious, but this is a healthier, vegan version of that same soup, and we think it tastes just as good! Leftovers can also be simmered until the liquid is reduced a bit, then pureed to make a wonderful bean dip!

Tortilla Soup
Serves 8 (makes 16 cups)
Active time: 45 min
Cook Time: 15 min
Total time: 1 hr
Serving Suggestions: Enjoy this flavor-filled soup with tortilla chips, quesadillas, or corn bread.

What you'll need:
  • 2 TBLS canola oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion OR 1 TBLS powdered onion
  • 1 TBLS minced garlic OR 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup flour OR all purpose Gluten-Free flour
  • 8 cups vegetable broth
  • 8oz can tomato sauce
  • 2, 15.5oz cans great northern or navy beans, rinsed and drained
  • 7oz can chopped green chilies
  • 1-2 jalapeƱos (depending on your family's level of heat tolerance), seeded and finely diced/minced*
  • 11/2 cups diced red bell pepper
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1, 15.5oz can red kidney beans (dark or light), rinsed and drained
  • 1, 14.5oz can diced tomatoes with juices
  • 3/4 loose cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • tortilla chips, broken into bite-sized pieces as garnish (optional)

What you'll do:
  • In a large stockpot over medium heat cook oil, onion, and garlic, stirring occasionally, until onion is tender translucent, about 5 min.--watch carefully near the end, move onto the next step if the garlic begins to brown).  
  • Add flour to oil, onion, and garlic mixture.  Sstir it in well with a wire whisk.  Cook, stirring frequently, until the mixture forms a golden brown roux, about 3-4 minutes.
  • Add broth, tomato sauce, white beans, chiles, peppers, and spices.  Increase heat to medium high and bring to a boil.  
  • Reduce heat to medium low, add kidney beans and tomatoes.  Simmer for 5 min. (Note: kidney beans are reserved for this step because adding too early can cause them to become too soft and split open.)  
  • Stir in cilantro just prior to serving.

Time tip:  Use powdered garlic and onion and skip the first 2 steps.
This is also a very easy meal to chop while you wait for things to cook or boil.

*Note:  If you'd like to offer a mild soup with more "heat" as an option--mince the jalapeƱos finely, add half to the soup, and put the other half in a dish on the side for people to add to their bowl as desired.  

Monday, October 21, 2013

Apple Quinoa Salad

This "salad" takes a while from start to finish, but it's really quite simple. Most of the time is consumed by cooking and chilling, so you just need to plan a little.  It keeps well and is an easy salad to make up to a day ahead of serve time.  This is great at any picnic or potluck and is paired really well with a creamy vegetable soup in these colder months!

I love this salad for it's freshness that is paired with such a fall-inspired comforting spice. The apples in the picture are chopped larger than is preferable, so take that into consideration. Also, feel free to play with this and switch the raisins out for craisins or currents!

Apple Quinoa Salad
Serves: 12 (feel free to half)
Active time: 20 minutes
Cook/Chill time: 30 minutes and 1 hour
Total time: 2 hrs (including the hour of chill time)
Serving suggestions:  For a light but filling dinner, serve this with Carrot Apple soup along with a green salad.

What you’ll need:
  • 2 cups apple juice
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups dry quinoa – rinsed
  • 1 TBLS cinnamon
  • 4 Granny Smith apples - diced
  • 2 cups chopped celery
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 2 TBLS olive oil
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 6 TBLS apple cider vinegar OR lemon juice OR mixed half and half
  • 1 cup of chopped/slivered almonds
What you’ll do:
  • In a large pot, heat juice, water, quinoa and cinnamon until boiling.  Lower heat, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes (until the liquid is absorbed). You can also do this step in a large rice cooker.
  • Once quinoa is done, place it in a large serving bowl, let cool a little bit, and put in the fridge for about 30 minutes to cool completely.
  • Once quinoa is cool, stir in the apples, celery, raisins, oil and salt. Sprinkle the apple cider vinegar over the top and stir.
  • Return to the fridge to chill at least one hour.  
  • Sprinkle the almonds on before serving.

Time Saving Tips:
Chop apples and celery while quinoa is cooling

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Mini-Quiches & Creamy Red Lentil Soup

These little guys were Ah. May. Zing.  Amazing, I say.  I was skeptical.  How could some simple Chickpea flour and water, plus some spices and add-ins taste anything like a quiche?!  Well -- I'll spoil the surprise.

They do!

They have a little bit of a different texture.  Thicker and more dense than a muffin, but nice and creamy in the middle.  And depending on what you put in them, they are just fabulous.

I got the recipe over here and many thanks to the gal who did all the work to figure out the correct proportions.  Many many thanks.

I've done some experimenting with different combos:
  • 1 tsp Herbs de Provence + 3 mini-bell peppers + 1 scallion, sliced
  • 1 tsp basil + 1/3 cup chopped mushrooms + 1 scallion, sliced + 1/4 cup finely chopped spinach
  • 1 tsp Herb de Provence + 1/3 cup very finely chopped broccoli + 1 scallion, sliced
I have tried anything with tomatoes yet, but I think it would be good.  I also want to try some chopped green chiles, but I don't think the boys would eat them, so I've stayed away.

I halved the recipe to just make 6 at a time (a pan of 6 fits nicely into my toaster oven!), and omitted the oil and used applesauce instead.  Totally a preference thing.  Olive oil is good fat, I say go for it and enjoy, but the husband likes it when I cut the oil as much as possible so I gave it a try and it worked. 

Eat these for breakfast with some fruit, along side a nice bowl of tomato soup at lunch, or on top of chili for dinner.

Mini-Quiches [Plant-based]
makes 6 regular
  • 1 1/4 cup garbanzo flour (Bob's Red Mill)
  • 1 1/2 cups cold water
  • 1 1/2 TBLS olive oil or applesauce
  • 1 tsp salt
  • add-ins: herbs, mushrooms, peppers, etc, all chopped fine
-- Mix the first four ingredients together in a 4 cup measuring cup until all the clumps are out and the mixture is smooth.  Add in herbs, if using, and stir.
-- Pour into greased muffin tins and sprinkle in your add-ins.
-- Bake for 15 minutes at 450 and then crack the oven door open and cook another 12 minutes until the edges have just started to brown.  Remove and cool 10 minutes before popping out of the tins.

These are GREAT to freeze (especially if you double it).  Once you pop them out, let them cool completely and then put into freezer bags and label.
Supposedly, you can make a fritata if you double this recipe.  I'm interested to see how that turns out!

And now, for a soup that these are equally as amazing with!!

This is a super simple and easy soup.  Due to the use of the wonderfully quick-cooking red lentils, this is the soup I go to when I need a light, and yet protein-filled, soup to go with a protein-light main dish.  It's flavorful and perfect for a quick lunch, too, with a chunk of bread, or one of the mini-quiche muffins!

Creamy Red Lentil Soup
serves 4-6

  • 1 TBLS crushed garlic
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped onion
  • 1 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1 cup dry red lentils
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • lemon wedges for serving
-- Saute the garlic, onion, carrots, and celery until tender.  7-9 minutes.
-- Add the lentils, water, broth, spices, and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, cover, and simmer 15 minutes until the lentils are very soft.
-- Puree with an immersion blender and season with salt and pepper.
-- Serve each bowl with a wedge of lemon to brighten the soup, if desired. 

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

4 Weeks of WINTER Meal Plans

                             4 Weeks of Winter Dinner Meal Plans

Week 1

Week 2

Week 3

Week 4

Monday, October 14, 2013

Hearty Barley Soup

It's officially soup season. I mean, come on -- who am I kidding?! "Soup season" at our house started weeks ago, but I couldn't put too many soups on here when there were still 75 degree days to enjoy!

This barley soup is like none you've ever tasted.  It's chocked full of good-for-you veggies and has a light hint of white wine and tarragon to give it an elegant spin.  It's easy to whip together and the flavors explode in your mouth.  Also, make sure to take note of the curry variation if you think your family would enjoy that more.

We love this soup. It's light while being extremely filling at the same time. It's magic, I think.

Hearty Barley Soup
Serves 6 (12 cups)
Serving Suggestions: Eat this with some hearty bread and a side green salad.

What you'll need:
  • 1 cup dry barley OR buckwheat
  • 2 1/2 cups water OR broth
  • 1 TBLS Olive Oil
  • 1 TBLS minced garlic
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped onion
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped carrots
  • 1 cup sliced celery
  • 1 can Italian diced tomatoes with juice
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp tarragon
  • 1/2 tsp rosemary
  • 2 TBLS white wine
  • 2 packed cups fresh spinach
  • 1 can Cannellini beans, rinse and drain
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Replace the tarragon, beans and wine with: 1 can garbanzo beans (rinse and drain) and 1 tsp curry powder

What you'll do:
  • Cook the barley with the 2 ½ cups of water or broth. (or if you have the time, simply just add it all to the pot when you add the broth in.)
  • Heat a large pot over medium heat and add oil.  Saute the garlic and onion for about 5 minutes until tender and transparent.
  • Add the 6 cups of broth, carrots, celery, diced tomatoes, spices, and wine. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 30 minutes until vegetables are soft.`
  • Add the barley, beans and spinach and gently stir for a few minutes until the beans are heated through and the spinach is wilted.

Time tip:
Cook barely ahead of time.

You can pre-cook the carrots in a microwave while onions are sauteing

Friday, October 11, 2013

Miso Week Recipe 4: Cauliflower Miso Soup

To close out this little week on miso, I now give you this wonderfully easy and exceptionally tasty pureed soup.  Oh and wow.  This was amazing.  I think it may be my new favorite vegetable pureed soup -- and that says something.  I could have eaten for a fourth day had there been more leftovers.  Alas, there was not, and I had to be content to get only 2 lunches out of it. The men in the house enjoyed it as well -- maybe not quite so much as I did, but they all said that it was a new family favorite.

I served this with the Honey-Miso chickpeas, candied sweet potatoes, and a small green salad.  It was quite the meal, let me tell you!

I did end up "crisping up" some onion and I do think it added to the over-all flavor, but I do think it would have been fine without the addition, too.

Original recipe found here.

Cauliflower Miso Soup
serves 6
  • 1 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1 1/2 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 head of cauliflower, chopped (florets)  6 cups
  • 6 cups broth (2 cups water, 4 cups broth)
  • 1 TBLS dry parsley
  • 1 tsp paprika or chili powder
  • 1 TBLS light colored miso
  • 2 cups chopped onion for "crisping" (optional)
-- In a large stock pot or dutch over, sauce the onion, celery and carrots, 7-9 minutes, until soft.
-- Add the cauliflower and paprika and stir until coated
-- Add broth, bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer 30 minutes until cauliflower is tender. 
-- Meanwhile, caramelize the onions if using
-- When cauliflower is soft, puree with a hand blender, or VERY CAREFULLY in a blender.
-- Put miso in a small bowl and add a quarter cup of soup to the bowl and stir until miso is dissolved.  Add soup back into pot and stir until fully incorporated.
-- Season with salt and pepper as desired.
-- Top each serving with crispy onions if desired

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Miso Week Recipes 2 & 3: Two Sides

Continuing on with MISO WEEK, here are two sides featuring the fun ingredient of miso!  I served these both with the last recipe on the miso-week-train: a cauliflower and miso soup.  Oh, was it a dinner to be had again!

I will say up front, that we enjoyed both of these sides.  There are recipe cards for both of them now in my recipe box.  The sweet potatoes were a little over the top for me for a simple dinner.  Maybe I'm just too used to the sweetness of them on their own, but they screamed Holiday Dinner to me and so I'll probably reserve them for something like that since I don't have a good candied sweet potato recipe already.  We couldn't quite taste the miso, though, so I'm wondering how much different they would taste without.

Original recipe found here.
Sweet Potatoes with Molasses and Miso
serves 6-8 sides

  • 2 1/2 lbs sweet potatoes, washed well and chopped (8-10 cups total)
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 TBLS molasses
  • 1 TBLS soy sauce
  • 2 TBLS maple syrup
  • 1 heaping TBLS miso
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1 TBLS lemon juice
  • 4 TBLS water
-- Half-cook potatoes in the microwave (7-8 minutes) or roast in oven.  
-- Place potatoes in 9x13 baking dish, mix all other ingredients together and pour over potatoes
-- Bake uncovered at 400 for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes to make sure the sauce is coating the potato chunks

(I haven't tried it, but I think it would work well to roast the potatoes and make the sauce minus the water and just mix it all together.)

The chickpeas, too, were delicious.  And we liked that we could taste the miso along with the honey and ginger.  Amazing.  I originally started to roast them on parchment paper as opposed to my Silpat to ease the clean up process, but something happened and the liquid started to burn off a little, so I switched everything to my Silpat and continued on from there and we were fine.  Not sure why that was, but I don't think I'll ever shy away from my Silpat again, even when sticky honey is involved.

Original recipe found here.
Honey-Miso Roasted Chickpeas
serves 6 - 8 sides

  • 2 14oz cans chickpeas, rinsed and drained 
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 TBLS miso
  • 1 TBLS grated ginger
-- Mix honey, miso, and ginger together in a mid-sized bowl
-- Add chickpeas and stir until chickpeas are all coated well
-- Place on a silpat or other non-stick baking mat, and spread evenly.  Bake at 400 for 30 minutes, or until starting to crisp, stirring after 20 minutes.

(You can also do this with 1/3 cup BBQ sauce if you're not into honey-ginger combo.  Just skip the miso if you go the BBQ route!)

Monday, October 7, 2013

Miso Week Recipe 1: Red Lentils and Kale

Welcome to MISO WEEK on the blog.  There are 4 recipes coming to you this week with the wonderful and subtle flavor of miso in them.  If you don't have miso, don't worry.  You can still make some of these dishes without the special ingredient.  The only reason I set out to have a miso week on the blog anyway was because I had a bit of it, but wanted to figure out different ways to use it other than just salad dressing.  So essentially, you get to benefit from my searching for great recipes that use this Asian ingredient.  (You can find miso in any Asian market, or in Whole Foods, or sometimes even in "normal" markets in the Asian section.  Light colored miso is probably the most versatile.)

This dish was simple delicious.  It was full of flavor without being bold.  It was nicely balanced and comforting.  We enjoyed it on a dreary, cold, and wet night, and maybe that made it taste better -- but I'm pretty sure it would taste great on any night.

I love that this meal involves kale.  There are so many recipes out there including the power-green in meals, but some of them, sadly, just don't work well for us.  This one, though, oh wow -- it was a great compliment to the other ingredients.  If you and your family aren't kale fans, just use spinach in place of it.

As for the miso -- we thought it really made this dish.  It would still be a great dish without it, but it's really wonderful with it, so if you can, go out and get some, and then make this dinner and eat it with a small salad with the Miso Mirin dressing!  YUM!

Original recipe is found here.  I tweaked the preparation of the meal quite a bit, just to save time.  If it seems like too many steps, just go with the original recipe's way of doing things.

Red Lentils and Kale 
serves 4-6
  • 1 cup dry red lentils + 2 cups broth
  • 4 cups chopped sweet potatoes
  • 1 cup chopped red onion
  • 1 cup chopped celery
  • 1 TBLS minced garlic
  • 1 15 oz can diced tomatoes, with juice
  • 1 cup broth
  • 3 packed cups de-stemmed and chopped kale (bite sized pieces) 
  • 1 TBLS light colored miso
  • salt and pepper to taste (but taste first!!)
-- Cook the lentils with the broth in a rice cooker
-- Meanwhile, chop and cook the sweet potatoes.  Heat in the microwave 7-8 minutes until just fork tender.
-- When lentils and potatoes are done, saute the onion, garlic, and celery in a large sauce pan until tender.
-- Add the tomatoes, broth, cooked lentils and sweet potatoes and bring to a boil, reduce heat to lowand simmer a couple minutes.
-- Add the miso, and stir to combine.  Add the kale and stir until wilted -- 3-4 minutes.

TIME TIP: Cook lentils and potatoes earlier in the day for this meal to come together in a cinch!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Korean Jajangmyun -- Black Bean Sauce over Rice

Before we left Ohio, a dear friend had us over for a traditional Korean dinner.  She's Korean, so she knows what she's doing, and let me tell you what, she put out a fabulous spread for us.  An amazing dipping sauce, this Black Bean Sauce main dish complete with Kimchi and seaweed and other Korean condiments, and a salad with a wonderful Miso-Mirin salad dressing (recipe below).  We loved it all, and I found the recipes for each of the dishes in my inbox the next morning.  Thank you, Julie!

I've been wanting to make this dish for a while now, but I didn't have the needed ingredients.

I did venture out to the Asian Market and bought some Black Bean Paste (fermented) and some light-yellow Miso (recipes using that coming soon!).  The black bean paste, of course, is what you need for this meal.  Otherwise, it's just a pile of sauted veggies on a heap of rice.

Doesn't sound very appetizing to me, either.

But with this magic black bean paste, oh boy, it's so good.  It's not very overpoweringly flavorful, so don't get any ideas about it blowing the socks off your taste buds, but it's Korean comfort food, and, well, it's comforting.

Also, if you like the chewy noodles, go with that -- it lends more textural difference to the meal.  I don't like the chewy-factor and I love rice, so that's what we went that route

I combined the recipe she used, with one I found on line, and made it all vegetarian to suit our taste, and it was fabulous.  Scot even said it was as good as Julie's, and from what I remember, it did taste the same. The only different is I served ours over brown rice due to preference instead of the noodles, and I used more zucchini/squash and less potato.

Korean Jajangmyun -- Black Bean Sauce over Rice
serves 8
  • 5 cups squash and or zucchini, cut into 1/2 inch chunks
  • 3 cups chopped onion -- red or yellow or a combination
  • 2 1/2 cups sweet potatoes, washed and cut into 1/2 inch chunks
  • 1 1/2 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 cup daikon (Korean radish), cut into 1/2 inch chunks
  • 8 oz chopped muchrooms
  • 2/3 cup black bean paste
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch + 1/2 cup cold water + 2 tsp sugar (set aside)
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 cup juilenned cucumber for garnish
  • 4 cups cooked brown jasmine rice
--  In a dutch over or large wok, saute vegetable until almost soft
-- Clear a space in the middle of the vegetables and add in the paste, heating through for a couple minutes before stirring into the vegetables.  Cook for 2 minutes.
-- Add 3 cups of water, cover and cook for 10 minutes.
-- Slowly add the cornstarch mixture while stirring, and stir til thick
-- Cook, uncovered, about 10 more minutes, or until desired consistency is reached (you want the mixture to be nice and thick)
-- Add sesame oil and take off heat
-- Serve over rice or noodles and garnish with cucumber

We're about to start MISO WEEK on the blog, but here's a simple and delicious dressing to get us started!

Miso Mirin Dressing --
  • 3 TBLS rice vinegar
  • 1 TBLS light colored miso
  • 1 TBLS Mirin
  • 1 TBLS soy sauce or tamari
  • 2 TBLS brown sugar
-- Mix all together and drizzle over garden salad or chopped raw vegetable