Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Weekly Eats Eleven (3/21 - 3/27)

Post Workout Snack: Toast with Chocolate Peanut Butter + Banana Chips

I was desperate for a banana/chocolate PB toast but was out of banana chips to the rescue! It was actually still delicious and I loved the crunch from the chips. Chocolate peanut butter is one of my favorite snack additions because its a nice little twist on regular PB!

Cooked, leftover rice plus frozen mixed vegetables and eggs, is a one way ticket to the laziest and tastiest dinner. Next time I think I'd like to use Chinese 5-Spice powder instead of the chili powder, which sort of numbed the other spices in this dish. However, for something that took less than 10 minutes, this filling take on fried rice certainly did the trick. To make vegan, simply sub crumbled tofu or edamame instead of eggs.

Feast: Vegan Okonomiyaki Panckes with Tonkatsu sauce, steamed Edamame, and Cold Marinated Tofu

This vegan, Asian-inspired feast was sooo good. Every once in a while, I like to make a few meal components instead of just one main entree. It makes dinner feel like something special, because maybe it took just a tiny more effort than one dish. First, I prepped the cold tofu salad which comes from America's Test Kitchen's Complete Vegetarian Cookbook. The tofu is marinated in a mix of seaweeds, mirin (sweetened sake), rice vinegar, and vegan fish sauce. To serve, strain with a slotted spoon and top with crumbled nori and toasted sesame oil. I've never had tofu served like this before, but it was delicious! We had it the next day in cabbage leaves, which was also wonderful. Finally, the main even if you will, were these Japanese vegetable pancakes loaded with vegetables and topped with vegan mayo and a ketchup/tamari sauce. These pancakes were absolutely delicious. The mix of the sauces on top took it over the edge and made them perfect. To round everything out, I served all of this with some simple cucumber sake martinis - equal parts dry sake and vodka, with thinly sliced/mandolined cucumber.

Dinner: Cheater Pad Thai

Step 1: boil noodles. Step 2: make sauce. Step 3: mix noodles with sauce and miscellaneous vegetables. That's really it, and that's why "cheater" is in the name of this recipe. I love traditional versions of pad Thai, but this quick and easy version will satisfy your cravings as well. I've made this recipe many times before, but this time I added sliced cucumber, coleslaw mix (green/red cabbage, carrots), and that's it! To make this last longer/serve more people, I multiplied all of the ingredients by four to make enough for one pound of rice noodles. This is also delicious served hot and cold.

Imbibe: Beetbox at 1618 Wine Lounge

Creamy, vinegary, sharp, and bitter - the Beetbox cocktail at 1618 is absolutely perfect. Besides its Pantone hued color, the bitter tastes of Campari mixed with a sweet/sour beet shrub made the best combination. The mint on top is a nice, bright balance to all things bitter and sour.

Imbibe: Kimchi Gibbler at 1618 Wine Lounge

Kimchi in a cocktail? I know what you're thinking. But let's not forget that I have some sort of inherent duty to try all of the strange cocktails that I can find. So after some (very brief) deliberation, I decided to give it a go. Finely strained kimchi juice, mixed with just a touch more of sriracha, local gin, and lemon make a much lighter riff on a bloody Mary. The balance in this cocktail was surprising, as I was expecting the kimchi to be overpowering, but the flavors together made a wonderfully spicy and sour drink.

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