Healthy Asian Cooking: You Are Not Better Than Ramen Or Dried Mustard

Not that I’m trying to pull a “Julie and Julia” type blogging experience here – but I am going to start blogging about recipes that I cook from a myriad of cookbooks that I have-but have never used-but wanted to use.

The following recipes were conceived from the “Moosewood Restaurant Low-Fat Favorites“, and birthed with my own two hands.

I like to touch things.

Fresh Spring Rolls

Filling:
3 oz rice vermicelli
2 cups lettuce
1 cup minced scallions
1 cup carrots
1 cup bell peppers
Fresh cilantro
1/4 cup toasted peanuts
12 rice paper discs

Dipping sauce:
Brown sugar, soy sauce, rice vinegar and lime juice. Sprinkle with peanuts for extra texture and to help the medicine go down.

*So the secret to keeping these things from making a gel-ly mess when assembling, is to prepare them on a damp cloth. Why haven’t I been told this sooner? (Probably have but I wasn’t listening.)

Cucumbers Vinaigrette
2 cucumbers (straight from the garden)
Vinaigrette:
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground dried
mustard
Black pepper to taste

Ground dried mustard is pretty awesome, and an amazing thing to have in your spice cabinet. I must agree with the crazy cashier lady at Russo’s, whom expressed a great love for dried mustard (while staring at me with crazy eyes) when I was purchasing it.

Don’t try to make this recipe without it. You are not better than dried mustard.

Szechuan Noodles

4 packets of Ramen Noodles

That’s right – Ramen. Don’t lie to yourself – you have a few packets in your pantry. We all do. It’s more of a staple than milk these days – especially since they aren’t produced by hormone injected bovine (and definitely less expensive).

And these are super good when used as the “noodle” component in asian food recipes.

1 cup thinly sliced red onion
1/2 cup of chopped scallions
1/2 cup chopped roasted peanuts
fresh cilantro for topping

Sauce:
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 tsp chili sauce
2 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp sugar
2 cloves of garlic
1/4 cup sherry wine
3 tbsp apple cider vinegar

Make the sauce in a blender, pour into a bowl with the cooked Ramen noodles, choppped veggies, and peanuts. Stir up and top with cilantro.

Totally yummy, healthy, and CHEAP meal! I am not going to do an elaborate breakdown of how much each item costs per person, but I can tell you this: it was less than $20 for all of the above ingredients.

Take THAT semi-homemade, crazy-eyed, Food Network lady that lies about how much things cost. Her lack of knowledge on grocery store prices makes it very clear that she  has not stepped foot into one in over 10 years.

End rant. Enjoy recipes.

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