Making an Asian style vegetarian recipe is quick and easy. This is Chinese style cooking adapted by me.
On Thursday I found Chinese spinach at the Farmer’s Market on Nicollet Mall. It has a lemon and pepper scent that I couldn’t resist. The leaves are deep green and pointy. It’s very pretty tied up in a neat bouquet. The seller was pleased when I asked about it. She beamed a proud smile. Smiles all around as I smelled the unique aroma. It inspired me.
Long grain brown rice
1 package of firm tofu cubed into half inch pieces
2 tablespoons of canola
tablespoon of mild curry powder
purple cabbage, green cabbage, green zucchini squash, red scallion, broccoli florets and the Chinese spinach.
Sauces: black bean sauce, Thai green curry sauce, Tamari, or soy sauce
Rinse 1/2 cup to 3/4 cups of brown rice in a sieve until the water runs clear. Place in a pot and add 3 parts water 1 part rice. Cook uncovered at a low medium heat.
The brown rice takes about 30-40 minutes to cook, if it’s not quick rice, which gives you time to prepare the other ingredients. When it is done, Stir it and then cover.
Cube the tofu, sprinkle with a mild curry powder mix together and put it in a large cast iron pan with the canola oil over medium heat. I use a large heavy cast iron pan for this. Turning the tofu as it browns.
Meanwhile, Rinse and prep the cabbages – cut thin slices, and broccoli florets, zucchini squash, red scallions and the Chinese spinach. Fill the pan with veggies. Leftovers will keep for a day.
Once the tofu is done remove from the pan scraping the pan clean. Then place in a covered bowl to keep warm.
Add the veggies to the pan. The vegetables start to turn brighter from their steam. Add 3 tablespoons of water and continue to steam the veggies for a few minutes.
Add a tablespoon plus of black bean sauce and liberally sprinkle Tamari sauce or Soy sauce on the vegetables.
Prepare a ½ cup of water in a small bowl and stir in a level tablespoon of cornstarch – dissolve it. Add to the cooking vegetables. Also add about ¼ teaspoon of Thai green curry paste to this mixture and toss it on the steaming vegetables.
Let it cook for a five minutes gently stirring and in a few minutes the sauce thickens. It’s ready to serve with the rice. Remove from the pan to plates. Put the yellow tinted tofu on top and you have a beautiful, colorful summer dish.
The colors are bright. They veggies are crisp and there lots of subtle flavors, but not too much, to surprise the palate. This is a mild dish.
It tastes really good. The Chinese spinach keeps it pepper and lemon flavor. It’s a quick meal to prepare.
Enjoy summer’s bounty.