Sunday, June 7, 2009

Asian Flavor

I'm not sure why, but I've seemed to be craving Asian dishes for the past few weeks, which is fine by me because it means I've been eating tons of fresh veggies! Even though the weather here hasn't been great lately, we have had a few summery days and I decided to take them as an opportunity to make some refreshing SUSHI! I used to practically live off of sushi in my pre-veg*n days, but now that I've finally learned how to make my own vegan sushi, I plan on eating it all the time this summer! This time around, I used brown rice and finally conquered the inside-out roll (rice on the outside) and it surprisingly wasn't anymore difficult to make than regular sushi. I made two different rolls last week, as you see above, and I was really happy with these flavor combinations. The roll in the front contained just some simple sliced avocado (makes everything 10x better) and carrots and the one in back had some cucumber and roasted sweet potato and both rolls were fantastic (even though I think I preferred the one with avocado just because it's so darn creamy).

This dish came out of my need to use up some cabbage in the fridge and it ended up being so great that I've made it at least 3 times in the past month! For the tofu, I marinaded it in a mix of wheat-free tamari, sesame oil, and five-spice and let it sit for a few hours before pan-frying it in a little bit of oil. As good as the tofu was, the cabbage stir fry was the real star on this plate and it couldn't have been easier, so I decided to post the (approximate) recipe:

Cabbage Stir-Fry:

1 large head cabbage, thinly sliced
1/2 red bell pepper, sliced
1 carrot, peeled and sliced
1-2 scallions, chopped
2 T. oil
2 t. agave nectar
1/4 c. tamari (or other soy sauce)
1 1/2 T. sesame oil
2 T. rice vinegar

Heat oil in a pan over medium-high heat. Sautee bell pepper and carrot for 1-2 min. Add cabbage and scallions and sautee another 4 min, or just until cabbage softens slightly. Add the other ingredients and cook for about 1 more min. and serve immediately. Serves 4-6 (depending on how much you love your veggies)

I've actually made this dish a few times before, but never got around to posting about it until now for some reason. The Cashew Ginger Tofu from ED&BV is so easy and the cashew sauce after it thickens in the oven is amazing! I used tempeh this time instead of tofu since it's all I had on hand, but it's just as good with tempeh (if not better) because it absorbs the sauce beautifully. I served this dish with some steamed cauliflower and asparagus that I sauteed in some soy sauce and sesame oil (my mom's recipe- it's great!).

Finals start Tuesday and by the end of the week my summer vacation will have officially begun!! One great perk of summer is more time to cook/bake new things and more time to share them all with you!


VeggieGirl said...

GREAT meals and craftsmanship!!

Good luck with finals and enjoy the beginning of summer!! :-)

Shanghai Monkey said...

Those rolls look so delicious!! And I totally agree - avocados DO make everything taste better ^_^

Vegan_Noodle said...

Good luck with finals!

Your inside out rolls look awesome. And yes, the more avocado in sushi... the better!

Hannah said...

That sushi looks seriously perfect! I tend to cook with Asian flavors most often, so this all sounds fantastic to me.