We ate too much. Way too much. Both Jimmy and I suffered from…how shall I put this? Let’s say upset tummies were the result of eating huge amounts of rich holiday food. That’s not to say we won’t indulge again before, during and after Christmas but some days we crave clean. Simple and clean. And this is it. What I call my “Wahine Bowl” is healthful and straightforward. The ingredients may be changed, substituted, increased or cut out…it’s whatever one likes. There is no right or wrong. As for the recipe, a satisfying amount of sushi grade fish is about 3.5 to 4 ounces per person. Tuna, salmon, hamachi, or pacific yellowtail, are all delicious; the only rule being, make certain you purchase the highest quality sushi grade fish you can get your hands on. I buy mine at Fresh Market where they carry 7 ounce tuna pieces available either fresh or frozen and packed in cryovac. I try to always have a few pieces in the freezer as they are great to flash grill as well. White, brown or black “Forbidden” rice are all fine, however, if you’ve not tasted black rice yet I strongly suggest you give it a try. It’s delicious, loaded with antioxidants and we’re trying to clean our acts up, remember? The gorgeous pink in the photograph is watermelon radish which I found in Whole Foods. They don’t always have them in stock but when they do I tend to grab a few and plan meals around them. They look like small, pale green turnips and although they cost a bit more these radishes have the additional advantage of tasting sweeter and less hot than traditional radishes. And aren’t they positively gorgeous? Sliced scallions, avocado, red onion, Serrano peppers, pickled ginger, seaweed nori, sesame seeds and kimchi are some of the many ingredients that work well in this dish. I serve roughly 1 cup to 1 1/2 cups of rice per person. Oh, and 1 1/4 of water to 1 cup of black rice is the perfect ratio. This is a quick meal to prepare. While the rice is cooking I’m chopping. When the rice is ready I leave it uncovered and every once in a while fluff it a little so as to cool it off slightly. We like the rice served warm or even room temperature. I hope you’ll try this dish on your “healthier” days during the Christmas season and the rest of the year.
Tuna and Black Rice Poke Bowls
- 7-8 ounces sushi grade tuna or fish of choice
- 2-3 cups cooked black rice or rice of choice
- 1 Haas avocado, ripe
- radishes, thinly sliced
- pickled ginger
- seaweed nori
- sriracha or any sweet hot chili sauce
- sesame seeds, black or white
- In two separate bowls place equal amounts of rice.
- Lightly rinse off fish and gently press between paper towels absorbing any excess water.
- Cut fish into small cubes and divide evenly between the two bowls.
- Cut the avocado in half and divide between the two bowls.
- Add equal parts of radishes, ginger and seaweed to the bowls.
- Garnish each bowl with sriracha and sesame seeds.
- Serve immediately.
Sometimes a girl just has to have a big, steaming bowl of lovely Asian-style deliciousness for dinner. How many times have we made our way home at day’s end after spending 10 hours working… working hard. To add to our woes often a last-minute run to the grocery store is required if we expect to have dinner. All of the ingredients for this dish are available at your grocery store and, get this, if you’re so beat you’re willing to take the easy way out, most of the makings called for are already cleaned, prepared and/or cut up. Yay for grocery store food prep! I don’t know about you but I’m slow as molasses in the kitchen and that’s on a good day. So if I can get a little help to speed things up I’ll take it. The recipe can easily be halved but I like to have leftovers for lunches the following day so take that into consideration.
This dish can be served over noodles, (rice, udon or cellophane are all fine), or it may be served over rice, (white, brown, jasmine or basmati), it all works. If you’re staying away from carbs altogether add more broth and the dish becomes more soup-like. Nice, huh? Most of the vegetables can be found already chopped in the produce section of your grocery store, the shrimp has been cooked and is in the seafood department and the sweet potato can be thrown in the microwave to “bake”. The sweet potato is SO good paired with the savory lemongrass! The spinach is tossed into the pan straight from the bag and the basil leaves are torn from the stalk and added without having to cut. Also, in the produce section, you’ll find tubes of fresh lemongrass, grated ginger paste and minced garlic in the jar. Oh, the glory of it all! Wait, wait! I almost forgot to mention that in the “international” section of the store are already prepared udon noodles in cryovac and, if you prefer glass noodles, just know they don’t have to be cooked. They soak in hot water for 15-20 minutes so they’re ready when you’ve finished the shrimp part of the recipe. Can you believe it? Again, if you’re trying to watch your weight, using “lite” coconut milk is perfectly fine. I try to have boxed chicken broth always on hand and it’s perfect with the shrimp but feel free to use what you have in the pantry. Speaking of pantry, the jarred herbs and all-ready-prepared noodles are great staples to stock up on as are a few bags of cleaned shrimp in the freezer, perfect for last-minute soups, salads and stirfrys. I know this recipe calls for a lengthy list of ingredients but please keep in mind, this is pretty much a “dump and stir” meal. I’m thrilled with the ease of it and I know you will be, too. Enjoy!
Shrimp in a Spicy Coconut Sauce
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 medium onions, chopped
- 1/4 cup lemongrass paste
- 3 tablespoons minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons ginger paste
- 2 red peppers, chopped
- 1 1/2 pounds zucchini, sliced
- 1 6-ounce bag fresh baby spinach
- 1 handful fresh basil leaves, 1 small box or bunch
- 2 pounds cooked shrimp, peeled, deveined and shells off
- 2 13.5-ounce cans unsweetened coconut milk, lite is okay
- 2 cups seafood, vegetable or chicken broth, boxed is fine
- 1 medium to large sweet potato, roasted, peeled, cut into 1/4″ cubes
- juice of 1 lime
- 1-2 red chiles or jalapenos, seeded and finely chopped. I use 2 as we like heat and spice but feel free to use just one for less spice. But do use at least one or it won’t be spicy, now will it?
- salt to taste
- rice or noodles for serving
- hot chili garlic sauce, optional, for serving
- Over medium-high heat add olive oil to a large, high sided pan.
- Add onions and stir until coated with oil and starting to release its perfume.
- Add lemongrass, garlic and ginger and thoroughly stir into onions.
- Add peppers and zucchini and continue stirring for 2 minutes.
- Add spinach and basil and stir until almost completely wilted.
- Add shrimp and toss until coated with the pan flavors.
- Pour in coconut milk and broth, mix well and raise heat bring to a boil.
- Add sweet potato, lime juice and chiles. Stir.
- Taste and add salt if needed.
- Serve in large bowls over cooked rice or noodles.