broccoli

Entrée, Gluten Free

LEMONGRASS TOFU BOWLS

Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen
Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen

I had my baby shower this past weekend with so many of my favorite people. I felt extremely loved and celebrated. While making the rounds to fifty-plus people that I truly care about wore me out, it was incredibly special. Even if you have a few babies, you do it for the first time just once, and it's sort of a surreal thing, growing a tiny person. My sister went full throttle with her "camping" theme. There were arrows and cactus, southwestern printed pillows, and a tee pee for the gifts. Even the food was in theme with grilled skewers and mac n cheese and a smores dessert on wooden plates with adorned utensils. If your shower can be "cooler" than you, mine certainly was thanks to my little sister. My mom's garden was decked out and in full bloom and my dad played bartender for all the ladies. Obviously I was thrilled to get set up with a lot of the equipment we need along with a good loot of books and mini clothes, but I was most humbled by how many people stepped up to help out and the lengths my sister went to to make this day thoughtful and special. There is nothing that inspires generousity more than being on the receving end of it. I am not the most awesome gift giver and I know I could not match my sisters party throwing skills, but giving time or skill or words... there is always a way to give something. Be it in very small but significant ways, I resolve to pay closer attention to celebrating and anticipating what may make someone feel special. 

I contributed a few recipes and a couple of quotes for the special issue of Epicurious: America's Best Recipes, which came out this month. The issue has some gorgeous looking recipes (Hugh has requested those blueberry handpies a few times now) and it's neat to see our cuisine divided by region. These bowls stuck out to me as a riff on the tofu bowls we make around here often. I love lemongrass and the unique freshness it brings to a stir fry as well as anything that can be topped with a ripe half of an avocado. It is clearly delicious warm out of the skillet but leftovers the next day were just as welcomed. It's definitely worth taking a peek at the issue if you come across it. 

Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen
Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen
Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen
Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen
Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen
Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen

LEMONGRASS TOFU BOWLS // Serves 4

Adapted from Epicurious: America's Best Recipes

  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 12-14 oz. package extra firm tofu, drained
  • 2 stalks lemongrass, trimmed and outer stalks removed 
  • 2 tsp. thai chile paste or sriracha
  • 1 Tbsp. lime juice
  • 2 tsp. rice wine vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh grated ginger
  • 1 Tbsp. coconut oil
  • 2 Tbsp. toasted sesame oil, divided
  • 2 cups-ish broccoli florets
  • 2 large carrots, julienned or sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 3/4 cup coconut milk
  • 2 Tbsp. soy sauce, to taste
  • toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
  • 2 avocados, for garnish
Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen
Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen
Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen
Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen
Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen
Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen

Rinse and cook the brown rice according to instructions. 

Cut the tofu into cubes and set it on a few paper towels or dish towel to drain. 

Smash the lemongrass with the back of a knife and mince it well. In a large mixing bowl, combine the lemongrass, chile paste, lime juice, vinegar, ginger, pinch of salt and stir to mix. Add the tofu and stir everything to coat. Set aside to marinate for 30 minutes. 

Warm the coconut and sesame oils in a large skillet over medium high heat. When the pan is hot, add the tofu and it's marinade and saute for 4-5 minutes, until edges are browned. Add the broccoli, carrots, coconut milk, remaining Tbsp. sesame oil and soy sauce and saute until the vegetables are warmed through. About 3 more minutes. Add the greens onions, stir and taste for seasonings.

Serve each bowl with a scoop of the brown rice, the tofu vegetable mixture in sauce, a sprinkle of sesame seeds and a half of avocado, sliced, on top. 

Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen
Lemon Grass Tofu Bowl . Sprouted Kitchen
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Entrée, Side

ORZO + BROCCOLI PESTO SALAD

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I have been a long time admirer of Heidi, creator of the eversopopular 101cookbooks. I started off my food blog interest, knowing of only two sites, Heidi's being one of them. Her taste in food is similar to mine, so I read (and still read) every post with full attention. I like to cook with whole grains and lots of produce; keeping food fresh and natural, while not compromising flavor. She has been a pioneer of that style in the food blog world, reminding readers that food that is good for you, does not end at steamed vegetables and a dry protein. Heidi is creative, kind, and relatable in the way she presents her recipes. She emphasizes on her site and in her new book Super Natural Every Day, that recipes are there to offer ideas and get you started, but always open for change. The book is full of helpful tips, great recipes, and room for you to make them your own. It is not short of beautiful images and her humble personality is woven through every page.

This recipe caught my eye as I was thinking of something to bring on a picnic with my sister in law and sweet little niece. It travels well and is packed with flavor. I only made a few changes, to avoid yet another trip to the store. I swapped in walnuts for the suggested pine nuts, added chopped cilantro, and tossed in some adzuki beans for a little extra protein. I am going to write Heidi's recipe as given in the book, and you can make your adjustments as you desire.

ORZO + BROCCOLI PESTO SALAD // Serves 6

Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson

1 Cup Whole Grain Orzo

5 Cups Raw Broccoli, cut into small florets

2 Cloves of Garlic

2/3 Cup Pinenuts, toasted

1/3 Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese

Juice of one Lemon

1/4 Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1/4 Cup Creme Fraiche

Grated Zest of one Lemon

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1 Large Avocado, sliced

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt generously. Add the orzo and cook according to package instructions. Drain, rinse with cold water, and drain again.

2. In the meantime, cook the broccoli. Bring about a cup of water to a boil in a large pot with a pinch of salt. Stir in the broccoli, put the lid on and cook for one to two minutes, just long enough to take the edge off. Quickly drain the broccoli, and run under cold water to stop the cooking. Drain well.

3. To make the pesto, combine 2 cups of the cooked broccoli, the garlic, most of the nuts, parmesan, 1/4 tsp salt, 2 Tbsp. of the lemon juice and pulse in a food processor. Drizzle in the olive oil and creme fraiche and pulse until smooth.

4. Toss the orzo, remaining cooked broccoli florets, about 2/3 of the pesto and the lemon zest. Taste it and add what you like - more lemon, salt, the rest of the pesto. Fold in the avocado and top with the remaining nuts and a bit of extra parmesan if you prefer.

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Entrée, Side, Gluten Free, Salad, Spring

MISO SLAW

MISOSLAW_01

I am convinced that having something to look forward to is one of the keys to happiness. Travel especially. You can love where you live, maybe even be content with your job, but who doesn't need an adventure? I am in need of one, and sooner than later. Hugh and I recently booked a trip to Scotland which will be half adventure and half for a job of his, and I feel like I got a boost of life. The anticipation of the plane flight, getting lost, new coffee places, the quirks of a different culture, no cell phone... it seriously warms my heart. There is a quote I love from author Donald Miller, "Everyone has to leave. Everyone needs to leave their home so they can love it again for all new reasons." By home, I don't think he literally means the shelter you live in, I interpret it to encompass all of the routine, the pressure, the responsibilities combined to define something as home. Maybe I'm getting a tad philosophical for a two week trip, but let's just say I need to leave.

MISOSLAW_02

Believe it or not, having 'things to look forward to' flows quite nicely into the miso slaw we have here. When I have leftovers for lunch already made for me the next day, THAT is something to look forward to. This dressing is not heavy at all, and is a nice change from your daily vinaigrette. It's my new favorite. I know there is a repulsion to soggy greens, but let it sit about 10 minutes before eating and the salt will soften up the cruciferous broccoli. I can't wait for lunch.

MISO SLAW // Serves 4

Inspired by The Kitchn: Apartment Therapy

Read through the directions first. It seems like a lot going on, but once you have all of the stuff, these are very straight forward steps. You could use spinach or any greens you prefer in place of arugula. I suggest doubling the dressing recipe so you have extra for another salad.

1 Package/3 1/2 Cups Broccoli Slaw

4 Cups Arugula, chopped

1/2 Cup Scallions, thinly chopped

1 English Cucumber, cut into sticks

1 Cup Unsalted Peanuts, roughly chop

1 pkg. 14 oz. Firm Tofu, well drained

Cilantro for Garnish (optional)

// Tofu Marinade //

1 1/2 Tbsp. Low Sodium Tamari/Soy Sauce

1 1/2 Tbsp. Agave Nectar

1 Tbsp. Sesame Oil

Fresh Pepper

Toasted Sesame Seeds

// Miso Dressing //

1/2 Cup Whole/Lowfat, Plain Greek Yogurt

1/3 Cup Rice Vinegar

3 Tbsp. Yellow Miso

3 Garlic Cloves, minced

1 Tbsp. Agave Nectar

1 Tbsp. Grated Ginger

1 Tbsp. Sesame Oil

1 Tsp. Red Pepper Flakes

2 teaspoons Low Sodium Tamari/Soy Sauce

MISOSLAW_03

Oven to 500'

1. For the dressing, put all of the ingredients in a bowl and whisk until combined.

2. For the tofu, be sure to let some of the water drain out by putting it on a plate with paper towels with something heavy resting on top. Cut the tofu into half inch sticks, see picture.

3. In a wide bottomed bowl, mix the tofu marinade of tamari, agave and sesame oil. Working very gently with about 2 tofu sticks at a time, roll them through the marinade to coat each piece. Space them apart on a baking tray covered with a piece of foil. Sprinkle generously with fresh pepper and sesame seeds, and bake in the upper third of the oven for about 20 minutes, flip them over halfway through baking. Remove and cool.

MISOSLAW_04

4. While cooling, mix your greens, scallions and peanuts in a bowl and toss with desired amount of dressing. Divide amongst plates and place a few cucumbers and tofu sticks on the side. Sprinkle with fresh cilantro and a few extra peanuts, and if you like it spicy, more red pepper flakes.

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