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Tag Archive: Asian

Purple Vegetable Sushi (vegan + gluten-free)

March 14, 2015 Leave your thoughts Print this page

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Hello there! Sorry for disappearing again…I tend to do that a lot. You may file a complaint with my AP Chem teacher if you require more Yes to Yummy in your life. ūüėČ

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I love sushi. I love how all of the flavors and textures blend together in a few wonderful bites that just make me smile with delight. I love how fun and colorful sushi can be, and who¬†doesn’t love eating pretty food, anyway?

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I don’t make sushi often, not because I don’t love it, but rather because rolling and slicing the sushi just takes time. To be totally honest, it took be over an hour to prepare six rolls, which isn’t too bad other than the fact that it’s completely hands-on time and the rice you have to use is very,¬†very sticky.

But again, all of the colors and that wonderful bite where everything squishy and crunchy blends together into sushi euphoria is all worth it. And sometimes you just need food to give you a little shove of sunshine and happiness in your life.

For the record, healthy food does fill me with joy. When I’m stressed or anxious, I crave something like this sushi filled with fresh veggies, not a greasy burger or processed sugary snacks. ūüôā

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This time, I used cucumbers, bell peppers, carrots, mango, and avocado inside the sushi, but you can of course use whatever vegetables (and fruit) you like. I’ve actually had sushi with strawberries in it and it’s pretty darn tasty…I’d recommend it.

The steps involved are actually pretty simple! First, you prepare the rice and cut up the fillings…

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…set up your sushi rolling station with nori sheets and a bamboo mat…

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…then add fillings and get rolling!

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Anyway, onto the recipe. Time for this chica to recover from her first SAT–five hours of bubble-filling hell! (WOHOO not.)

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Print this page

Purple Vegetable Sushi (vegan)

Yes,¬†YOU can successfully make sushi at home, I promise! You can of course use regular sushi rice here, but I love how the deep purple contrasts with the greens, reds, and golds of the fillings. I’m no sushi samurai, but these wound up being both beautiful and delicious…and if I can do it, you can, too!

Ingredients

Prep Time 1 hr
Cooking Time 30 min
Total Time 1 hr 30 min
Yield 6-8 servings

FOR THE RICE:

1 bag of Thai Sticky Purple Rice, or 2 1/4 cups of sushi rice

4 1/2 cups of water

1/3 cup of rice vinegar

3 tablespoons of sugar

3/4 teaspoon of salt + a pinch extra

FOR THE SUSHI:

2 large avocados, thinly sliced

1 large bell pepper, thinly sliced

2 small carrots, peeled and thinly sliced

1 medium cucumber, seeded and thinly sliced

1 mango, peeled and thinly sliced

6 sheets of nori (seaweed paper)

A bamboo sushi mat, which can be purchased here

Directions

FOR THE RICE:

Pour the rice into a collender and rinse well with until the water becomes clear. Dump into a medium saucepan, add the water and a pinch of salt, and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low and cook until most of the water has been absorbed, about 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine the rice vinegar, sugar, and salt in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Warm for 5 minutes, or until both the sugar and the salt have been dissolved completely. Pour into a measuring cup with a lip and set aside.

Once the rice has finished cooking, let it stand for ten minutes before fluffing with a fork¬†and transferring to a large bowl. Slowly add the rice vinegar mixture to the rice–JUST a little bit at a time–while fiercely stirring the rice with a wooden spoon or spatula. This will help the rice get properly sticky while cooling it down at the same time.

After all of the rice vinegar mixture has been used, set aside the prepared sushi rice and set up your sushi-making station.

TO ASSEMBLE:

Set out a bowl of water mixed with a little rice vinegar. You’re going to need this to wash your hands, because things are about to get, er, sticky.

To make a roll of sushi, place a piece of nori on the bamboo mat shiny-side down. Place a large scoop of the prepared sushi rice on top and, using damp hands, spread it out all over the nori sheet, leaving about an inch free on the end farthest from you and just a little space around the edges. The rice should form a layer approximately 1/2-inch thick all over the nori sheet and spread evenly throughout.

Now it’s time for the fillings! Place a couple of slices of each filling about 1/2 inch from the edge closest to you, keeping everything as tightly packed together as possible. You don’t want too much or else your roll is going to explode, so go light on fillings, especially for your first roll.

To roll the sushi, fold over the bottom of the bamboo mat on the edge closest to you over the fillings, picking up the nori sheet with you as you go. Give it a good squeeze to secure and continue rolling, using the mat to fold the nori over itself and applying gentle pressure every so often to keep things together.

Once you’ve completely rolled up the sushi, pull out the bamboo mat and use a sharp, damp knife to slice the sushi into smaller pieces. Repeat the process with the remaining rice, fillings, and nori.

Serve immediately with tamari or coconut aminos, and give yourself a big pat on the back for being a sushi ninja.


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What is your favorite sushi filling combination? Leave me a comment here or on Facebook and let me know!


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Purple Vegetable Sushi (vegan)

March 4, 2015 Print this page

Yes,¬†YOU can successfully make sushi at home, I promise! You can of course use regular sushi rice here, but I love how the deep purple contrasts with the greens, reds, and golds of the fillings. I’m no sushi samurai, but these wound up being both beautiful and delicious…and if I can do it, you can, too!

Ingredients

Prep Time 1 hr
Cooking Time 30 min
Total Time 1 hr 30 min
Yield 6-8 servings

FOR THE RICE:

1 bag of Thai Sticky Purple Rice, or 2 1/4 cups of sushi rice

4 1/2 cups of water

1/3 cup of rice vinegar

3 tablespoons of sugar

3/4 teaspoon of salt + a pinch extra

FOR THE SUSHI:

2 large avocados, thinly sliced

1 large bell pepper, thinly sliced

2 small carrots, peeled and thinly sliced

1 medium cucumber, seeded and thinly sliced

1 mango, peeled and thinly sliced

6 sheets of nori (seaweed paper)

A bamboo sushi mat, which can be purchased here

Directions

FOR THE RICE:

Pour the rice into a collender and rinse well with until the water becomes clear. Dump into a medium saucepan, add the water and a pinch of salt, and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low and cook until most of the water has been absorbed, about 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine the rice vinegar, sugar, and salt in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Warm for 5 minutes, or until both the sugar and the salt have been dissolved completely. Pour into a measuring cup with a lip and set aside.

Once the rice has finished cooking, let it stand for ten minutes before fluffing with a fork¬†and transferring to a large bowl. Slowly add the rice vinegar mixture to the rice–JUST a little bit at a time–while fiercely stirring the rice with a wooden spoon or spatula. This will help the rice get properly sticky while cooling it down at the same time.

After all of the rice vinegar mixture has been used, set aside the prepared sushi rice and set up your sushi-making station.

TO ASSEMBLE:

Set out a bowl of water mixed with a little rice vinegar. You’re going to need this to wash your hands, because things are about to get, er, sticky.

To make a roll of sushi, place a piece of nori on the bamboo mat shiny-side down. Place a large scoop of the prepared sushi rice on top and, using damp hands, spread it out all over the nori sheet, leaving about an inch free on the end farthest from you and just a little space around the edges. The rice should form a layer approximately 1/2-inch thick all over the nori sheet and spread evenly throughout.

Now it’s time for the fillings! Place a couple of slices of each filling about 1/2 inch from the edge closest to you, keeping everything as tightly packed together as possible. You don’t want too much or else your roll is going to explode, so go light on fillings, especially for your first roll.

To roll the sushi, fold over the bottom of the bamboo mat on the edge closest to you over the fillings, picking up the nori sheet with you as you go. Give it a good squeeze to secure and continue rolling, using the mat to fold the nori over itself and applying gentle pressure every so often to keep things together.

Once you’ve completely rolled up the sushi, pull out the bamboo mat and use a sharp, damp knife to slice the sushi into smaller pieces. Repeat the process with the remaining rice, fillings, and nori.

Serve immediately with tamari or coconut aminos, and give yourself a big pat on the back for being a sushi ninja.


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Sweet and Sour Strawberry Chicken

December 27, 2013 Print this page

Are your taste buds bored? Tired? Lethargic? Are they sick of blandness? Do they want change? Then look no further than Sweet and Sour Strawberry Chicken!

Ingredients

Prep Time 4 hr
Cooking Time 35 min
Total Time 4 hr 35 min
Yield 3-4 servings

FOR THE MARINADE:

1/2 of a medium onion

2 scallions

1 large clove of garlic

A 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled

1/4 cup of coconut aminos (can be substituted with organic tamari)

1/4 cup of lemon juice

1 tablespoon of rice vinegar

1 teaspoon of fish sauce

1 teaspoon of red curry paste (optional but recommended)

2 lb of chicken drumsticks (about 8 drumsticks)

Coconut oil, for greasing

FOR THE SAUCE:

1 10-ounce bag of frozen strawberries (preferably organic)

1/4 cup of coconut aminos (can be substituted with organic tamari)

2 tablespoons of lemon juice

2 tablespoons of rice vinegar

1/4 cup of water

1/4 cup of all-fruit strawberry jam

1 tablespoon of toasted sesame oil

1 teaspoon of tomato paste

1 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon of cinnamon

1 teaspoon of powdered ginger

A pinch of garlic powder

A generous pinch of salt

1-2 dates (optional but recommended)

2 tablespoons of sesame seeds, to garnish

Directions

In the bowl of a food processor, blend together the onion, scallions, garlic, ginger, coconut aminos, lemon juice, rice vinegar, fish sauce, and red curry paste until smooth.

Pour the marinade into large bowl. Add in the chicken, toss to coat, and cover with plastic wrap. Let marinate for at least 4 hours and preferably overnight.

45 minutes or so before you want to eat, preheat the oven to 450 degrees and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place a wire rack on top and lightly grease it with coconut oil so the chicken doesn’t stick too much.

Take the drumsticks out of the fridge and place them on the wire rack.

Brush a little of the remaining marinade on top of each drumstick, then bake for 15 minutes. Flip over, brush the other side with some more marinade, and bake for another 15 minutes. Discard the marinade you don’t use.

Meanwhile, get to work on the sauce. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, stir together the frozen strawberries, coconut aminos, lemon juice, rice vinegar, and water.

As the strawberries defrost, smash them up with a stirring spoon to incorporate them into the liquid. Once the fruit is thoroughly smashed, stir in the strawberry jam, toasted sesame oil, tomato paste, balsamic vinegar, cinnamon, powdered ginger, garlic powder, and salt. Bring to a boil, turn off the heat, and transfer to  a food processor.

Pulse the strawberry mixture until smooth, about 1 to 2 minutes. While the machine is going, pop a date into the feeding tube, quickly re-cover, and keep going until the date is fully incorporated. Taste for sweetness: it really makes you pucker, add another date, but if it’s too sweet, pour in a little more rice vinegar.

Once your adjustments have been made, pour the sauce back into the pan and let reduce for 5 minutes over low heat.

Take the chicken out of the oven and heat up the broiler.

Brush a little of the strawberry sauce on top of each drumstick. Broil until crisp, about 3-5 minutes, then repeat on the other side. Pour the remaining sauce into a large bowl.

Once crisped to your liking, add the chicken to the bowl with the sauce. Toss to coat, then add in the sesame seeds. Plate and serve immediately.


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Sweet and Sour Strawberry Chicken

December 27, 2013 1 Comment Print this page

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Are your taste buds bored? Tired? Lethargic? Are they sick of blandness? Do they want change?

Then look no further than Sweet and Sour Strawberry Chicken. It’s sweet, it’s sour, it’s salty, it has a nice unami punch, and hey, it’s a little bitter–so all of the sections of your tongue are taken care of. It’s really fun to eat, too, although you will need a large pile of napkins and wipes to clean yourself up afterwards. There’s no sugar added, either: the sweetness comes purely from strawberries, all-fruit jam, and a date or two. Best of all, this dish is super kid-friendly, so even your pickiest eaters will be able to enjoy it. What’s not to love?

Ready to make this super yummy chicken? Let’s get started.

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In the bowl of a food processor, blend together 1/2 of a medium onion, 2 scallions, 1 large clove of garlic, a 1-inch piece of peeled ginger, 1/4 cup of coconut aminos, 1/4 cup of lemon juice, 1 tablespoon of rice vinegar, 1 teaspoon of fish sauce, and 1 teaspoon of red curry paste.

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Wheeeeeeeeee!

When the mixture is homogeneous and no chunks remain, pour it into a large bowl. Add in 2 pounds of chicken drumsticks (8 drumsticks for me), toss to coat, and cover with plastic wrap. Let marinate for at least 4 hours and preferably overnight. If you’re feeding more people, feel free to increase the chicken up to 3 pounds; if you want to higher than that, double the marinade recipe.

45 minutes or so before you want to eat, preheat the oven to 450 degrees and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place a wire rack on top and lightly grease it with coconut oil so the chicken doesn’t stick too much.

Take the drumsticks out of the fridge and place them on the wire rack.

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Brush a little of the remaining marinade on top of each drumstick, then bake for 15 minutes. Flip over, brush the other side with some more marinade, and bake for another 15 minutes. Discard the marinade you don’t use.

Meanwhile, get to work on the sauce. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, stir together 1 10-ounce bag of frozen strawberries (preferably organic), 1/4 cup of coconut aminos, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of rice vinegar, and 1/4 cup of water.

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As the strawberries defrost, smash them up with a stirring spoon to incorporate them into the liquid. Once the fruit is thoroughly smashed, stir in 1/4 cup of all-fruit strawberry jam, 1 tablespoon of toasted sesame oil, 1 teaspoon of tomato paste, 1 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, 1 teaspoon of powdered ginger, a pinch of garlic powder, and a generous pinch of salt. Bring to a boil, turn off the heat, and transfer to  a food processor.

Pulse the strawberry mixture until smooth, about 1 to 2 minutes. While the machine is going, pop a date into the feeding tube, quickly re-cover, and keep going until the date is fully incorporated. Taste for sweetness: it really makes you pucker, add another date, but if it’s too sweet, pour in a little more rice vinegar.

Once your adjustments have been made, pour the sauce back into the pan and let reduce for 5 minutes over low heat.

Don’t forget about that chicken! Once you take it out of the oven, heat up the broiler…

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…and brush a little of the strawberry sauce on top of each drumstick. Broil until crisp, about 3-5 minutes, then repeat on the other side. Pour the remaining sauce into a large bowl.

Once crisped to your liking, add the chicken to the bowl with the sauce. Toss to coat, then add in 2 tablespoons of sesame seeds. Plate and serve immediately.

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Not sure what to serve with this? I’d recommend making up some cauliflower rice and sauteing either baby bok choy or spinach with a little coconut aminos and a touch of orange juice.

What dish excites YOUR taste buds? Leave me a comment on Facebook and let me know!


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Finger-Lickin’ Sesame Spareribs

October 26, 2013 Print this page

A healthier spin on a Chinese food classic that’s sure to satisfy any and all cravings for sweet, sticky takeout!

Ingredients

Prep Time 5 min
Cooking Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 5 min
Yield 6 servings

3-4 pounds of spareribs, cut into individual sections (ask your butcher to do this for you)

2 cups of water plus an additional 1/2 cup

5 cloves of garlic, minced

1-inch thumb of ginger, peeled and sliced into 6 thin rounds

1/2 cup of coconut aminos (can be substituted with organic tamari)

2 tablespoons of toasted sesame seeds

2 tablespoons of coconut sugar

1/2 cup of orange juice

Directions

Place the spare ribs into the skillet. It should be snug but not suffocating.

Add 2 cups of water water to the skillet and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat slightly so everything just bubbles, and cook until the water is completely evaporated, about 20 minutes. Flip the ribs over every 5 minutes or so to make sure there’s even coverage.

Once the water’s gone, let the ribs sear in the pan until brown on both sides, about 5 to 7 minutes. Flip them over once or twice before proceeding.

To the pan, add the garlic,  ginger, coconut aminos, toasted sesame seeds, coconut sugar, and 1/2 cup of water.  Bring to a bubble, then reduce the heat so the liquid is at a gentle boil. Cover and cook for 10 minutes, turning the ribs once or twice.

Add the orange juice, re-cover, reduce the heat slightly, and cook until tender, about 20 to 30 minutes longer. Flip the ribs over every 5 to 10 minutes.

Toss the ribs with the sauce, garnish with some additional sesame seeds, and dig in!


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