Chicken & Bok Choy

High in protein and vitamin C this dish surprised us when it hit our tongues.  Not that we thought it’d be gross or anything, we just didn’t have terribly high expectations.  Succulent chunks of chicken, slightly crunchy bok choy, velvety shiitake mushrooms, a well-rounded flavor that’s slightly salty and powerful with ginger- this dish is lovely.

Ingredients:

2 TBS chicken broth

1 cup chopped scallions

2 TBS fresh minced ginger

2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized chunks

1½ cups sliced fresh shiitake mushrooms

4 cups chopped bok choy

2 TBS soy sauce

1 TBS rice vinegar

salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  • Heat broth in a skillet
  • When the broth begins to steam, add scallions and sauté for 2 minutes
  • Add the ginger and sauté for another minute
  • Add chicken and continue to sauté
  • After 2-3 minutes add the shiitake mushrooms and bok choy and cook for another 3-4 minutes
  • Add soy sauce, rice vinegar, salt, and pepper

We opted to have this over brown rice but it would also be great over noodles, or wrapped up in a tortilla.

Inspired by this recipe from WHF.

J

Five-spice chicken

Ginger, cloves, cinnamon, star anise, fennel, garlic… oh my!  This dish really packs a punch when it comes to flavor.  Moist chunks of chicken in a reduced chicken broth with crunchy pieces of green beans- it wins on the texture side too.It’s fairly simple in execution and is done easiest when all of the vegetables are chopped ahead of time.

Ingredients:

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed

4 cups chicken broth

½ inch sliced fresh ginger

6 whole cloves

2 cinnamon sticks

5 star anise

½ tsp dried fennel seeds

1 medium-sized onion, chopped into big chunks

3 cloves garlic, chopped in big pieces

6 fresh shiitake mushrooms, sliced

1 lb green beans, ends trimmed off and cut into 1-inch pieces

½ cup minced scallions

Directions:

  • Healthy Sauté the onion in a large frying pan over medium-low heat for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently

  • Add the garlic and continue to sauté for another minute
  • Add the chicken broth, ginger, cloves, cinnamon stick, star anise, and fennel seeds. Turn the heat to medium-high and simmer for 15 minutes

  • Strain the broth mixture and put liquid back into pan. Bring to a boil and simmer on high heat with chicken pieces, green beans, and mushrooms

  • Add scallion, salt and pepper to taste

I opted to serve this in a bowl, over brown rice that I’d cooked in a mixture of chicken broth and water.

Inspired by this recipe on WHF.

J

Asian Tuna

While out marketing a few days ago I came across three nice-looking tuna steaks, so I picked them up.  In the same 24 hours I received an email with a wonderful-looking recipe for Asian tuna: a sweet and syrupy pan sauce with thick slices of shitake mushrooms in it.  I figured that this was meant to be, so I tried it out.  Wow am I ever glad that I did!

Asian tuna, jasmine rice, and a side salad

Ingredients:

tuna steaks

1 TBS fresh lemon juice

1 cup minced scallion

3 medium cloves garlic, pressed

1 TBS minced fresh ginger

2 cups thickly sliced fresh shiitake mushrooms (remove stems)

1 TBS chicken broth

1 cup orange juice

2 TBS tamari

2 TBS chopped cilantro

salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  • Preheat the grill
  • Rub tuna with lemon juice and season with a little salt and pepper and set aside
  • Heat 1 TBS broth in a large skillet on the stovetop. Sauté the scallion, garlic, ginger, and mushrooms in broth for about 2 minutes, stirring constantly over a medium heat
  • Add orange juice and cook for another 2 minutes, then add the tamari and cilantro

shitake mushroom pan sauce

  • Grill your tuna steaks to your desired doneness

grilled tuna steaks

  • Place tuna on plates and pour mushroom sauce over each piece

This recipe was inspired by World’s Healthiest Foods.

I opted to serve this with some jasmine rice that I cooked in chicken broth, then added to some healthy-sautéed asparagus, celery bits, and ramps (whites and greens).

jasmine rice stir-fry

We also had a side-salad of spring greens and fresh tomato that was tossed in a dressing of:

ginger-lemon tossed salad

J

Spinach salad with aduki beans

While searching one night for a salad that would pair well with dinner I found this recipe.  It’s light, and sweet, and packed with protein and iron.

baby spinach & aduki beans

Did you know that the aduki bean is the second most popular legume in Japan, following the soybean?  And that sometimes they are referred to as “red cowpeas”?  If you’ve ever eaten red bean paste, then you’ve eaten aduki beans because that’s what’re typically used to make it.

ingredients combined in a large bowl

Ingredients

6 Clementines, 2 juiced & 4 segmented
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
salt & pepper to taste
1 cup thinly sliced red onion
1 (15-oz) can aduki beans, rinsed and drained
1 pound of baby spinach
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

Directions

  • In a large bowl, whisk together 1/4 cup Clementine juice, vinegar, salt and pepper
  • Add clementine segments to the vinaigrette
  • Add onion, beans, spinach and parsley and toss
  • Plate and serve

spinach salad with aduki beans

J

Recipe adapted from a post on Whole Foods Market

Honey-Soy-Glazed Root Vegetables

If you’ve never eaten a cooked radish then you’re missing out.  If you’ve only ever had them raw and disliked radishes and written them off, again, you’re missing out.  When a peppery & crunchy radish is cooked its flavor and texture transform into something wonderful.  Something buttery.  Something smooth.  Something yummy.  Radishes are roastable, steamable, fryable, but I would start here where they’re incorporated with other flavors so that if, for some reason, you don’t care for them- you still have other tasty vegetables to eat.

Ingredients

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 pound medium turnips, cut into 3/4-inch wedges

1 pound medium radishes, quartered

½ medium sweet potato, quartered & sliced

1 large carrot, sliced

1/4 cup honey

2 tablespoons soy sauce

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 pound Swiss chard, bottoms of stems discarded and leaves chopped

2 tablespoons molasses

2 tablespoons water

Salt

6 large shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and caps quartered

1/2 pound rice crackers, pulverized

Pulverizing rice crackers. Need I say more?

Directions

  • In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of oil. Add the turnips and radishes, sweet potatoes and carrots and cook over medium-high heat, stirring, until lightly browned and crisp-tender, 10 minutes
  • Add the honey and cook over medium heat, stirring, until the vegetables are glazed.
  • Add the soy sauce and cook until syrupy
  • Add the lemon juice and the Swiss chard; cook until the chard is wilted. Raise the heat to high and cook until all of the liquid has evaporated; keep warm.

Chopped Swiss chard & quartered shitake

  • In a medium bowl, whisk the molasses with the water and season with salt. Add the shiitake and toss to coat.
  • Drain the mushrooms, squeezing out most of the excess liquid.
  • In a separate bowl, toss the mushrooms with the rice cracker crumbs to create a crunchy coating

Shitake coated in rice crackers

  • In a large skillet, heat the remaining oil. Add the mushrooms and cook over a high heat, until golden and crisp

Crisping the shitake

  • Transfer to paper towels to blot off oil. Top the vegetables with the mushrooms and serve

We had our glazed root vegetables with some Asian pork tenderloin.  They would side well to almost any meat though, or could be eaten alone or over rice as a vegetarian dish.

Glazed root vegetables with pork tenderloin

J

Recipe adapted from an article in Food & Wine, recipe by David Chang