Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Spring Rolls and Thai Peanut Sauce

Spring Rolls: Makes 20 (3-4 servings)
Rice Paper Spring Roll Wraps
vermicelli rice noodles
1 bunch of chopped fresh cilantro
1 bunch of chopped fresh scallions
1 bunch of chopped fresh basil
1 bunch of chopped fresh mint, optional
4 carrots, sliced thinly into long and skinny matchsticks
               Optional: red bell peppers and cucumbers, sliced the same way as the carrots
3 good and big handfuls of mung beans/bean sprouts
optional: 12 oz cooked shrimp, peeled/deveined and chopped into quarters
optional: dry spiced tofu, chopped into matchsticks

  1. Fill a medium bowl with very hot (from the tap is fine) water, and put one bunch of the noodles, submerging completely. 
  2. Mix the chopped herbs (and shrimp) in a medium bowl. Prep the bean sprouts and carrots, and have them ready near your work station.
3. Fill a deep (as opposed to shallow) plate with water.
It helps to put the plate on the counter and then fill it from a pitcher. Please a single wrapper in the plate, gently sliding it under the water to fully submerge it. The wrapper will be completely soft when it is ready to be used.
4. When the noodles are fully soft, remove the wrapper from the plate, and hold it over the plate to allow excess water to drip off for a few seconds. Place the wrapper on a dry work surface, such as a plate or cutting board, and make sure it lays flat.
5. Place a very small handful, less than 1/4 cup, of the chopped herbs in the middle of the wrapper. Lay down a few carrot matchsticks, some bean sprouts, and other chopped veggies and tofu if you chose to include them also in the middle of the softened wrapper, aligning everything in one direction. 
6. Wrap like a burrito! Fold the ends in first, then roll up along, making sure everything is nice and tight in the wrapper. If the wrapper rips, just throw out the wrapper and start again with a new one. Do you even know how many are in just one container of wrappers? It's a lot.

Thai Peanut Sauce: makes 1 cup sauce
1/2 cup chunky peanut butter, I prefer the non-homogenized kind
Scant 1/4 cup soy sauce or tamari or Bragg's
scant 1/4 cup rice vinegar
1-2 tbsp sriracha sauce, to taste
3-4 crushed or finely chopped cloves of garlic
optional: 1 finely chopped scallion
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
optional: 2 tsp fish sauce (it really does make the difference, but vegetarians can omit it)
1 1/2 tbsp lime juice
1/2 tsp ground white pepper
optional: 1 tsp sugar (personal preference, add it after you mix everything else)

1. Mix everything together!! If you feel the sauce is too thick for your liking, add 1/2 tbsp water at a time to thin. If you feel it's too thin, add 1-2 tbsp peanut butter at a time.

Serve the spring rolls on a giant platter, with the sauce divided up into a few small bowls for dipping. Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Vegan Spinach and Brocolli Quiche

Adapted from this recipe

1 block firm tofu
1/2 cup plain soymilk
dried basil, thyme, crushed red pepper, umami paste, pinch nutmeg

1 lb fresh spinach, coarsely chopped
12 oz bag frozen chopped broccoli
1 small onion, chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tbsp vegetable oil

pie crust: adapted from this recipe mix in a small bowl, and roll with a peppermint schnapps bottle
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon baking powder¼ cup ice cold olive oil (refrigerate)
¼ - ½ cup ice cold water, as needed


  • Blend tofu and soymilk in blender until smooth, add spices and blend again until thoroughly mixed.
  • Saute onion and garlic in vegetable oil until soft, add broccoli and continue stirring over heat until not frozen. Add chopped spinach and stir over heat until just wilted.
  • Remove filling mixture from heat, and add blended tofu, stirring well to incorporate.
  • Press pie crust into tin, and fill with filling mixture. Bake at 400 F for 40 minutes.
  • Allow to cool for 5 minutes, and then EAT