DDD #89 – Vegan Spicy Szechuan Lo Mein Noodles with Vegetables

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2018

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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This is a really easy recipe but truly makes a fuckton.  So, unless you are feeding a large group or intend to eat this for days, consider cutting the recipe down.  The veggies you choose to use are up to you.  This can be made with no veggies at all or with regular pasta.  It is a very forgiving dish.

Click the image above to watch the video.

Vegan Vegetable Spicy Szechuan Lo Mein Noodles

Feeds 10 or more

INGREDIENTS

2 1/2 lbs of SOFT (or cooked) lo mein or chow mein noodles or even cooked spaghetti

1/2 lb vegan meat of choice (I used leftover Tofurky ham) – diced (very optional)

for the veggies

2 tsp hot chili oil (or other oil)

2 tsp sesame oil

1 small onion – diced

6 long beans (or other green beans) chopped

1 bell pepper (I used 1/2 red & 1/2 yellow) – diced

1 zucchini – diced

2 dozen snow peas – trimmed & sliced

6 mushrooms – sliced

2 small heads of broccoli – cut into florets

5 or 6 carrots – chopped

1 cup purple (or other) cabbage – chopped

8 oz can sliced water chesnuts – drained

6 bird’s eye chilis – split (optional)

1/2 cup water

for the sauce

2 TBS minced ginger

4 garlic cloves – minced

1 tsp Chinese 5 Spice

2 TBS Shaoxing cooking wine or rice vinegar

4 TBS light soy sauce

2 TBS dark soy sauce

1 tsp agave

1 large handful Thai basil (or other basil)

GARNISH – more shredded basil or cilantro, sesame seeds, sliced scallions, lime wedges

DIRECTIONS

In a very large wok, heat the two oils.  Add all the ingredients in the “for the veggies” list.  Heat over high heat for about 5 minutes or until the veggies are tender.

Add the noodles, faux meat (if using) & everything in the “for the sauce” list.  Combine & heat through.

Serve with your garnishes of choice.

Vegan Spicy Lemongrass & Ginger Beef with Purple Cabbage Fried Rice

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2016

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

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I had a head of purple cabbage in my fridge that was the size of a basketball.   I decided to add half of it to some leftover rice to accomplish two things: not waste all the cabbage & to extend the quantity of rice with some guiltless & vibrant cabbage.  I am very happy with the result both in color & the crunch the cabbage adds to the texture.  I recommend it very highly.

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Purple Cabbage Fried Rice

INGREDIENTS

(I used a tad more cabbage than rice but the ratio is up to you.)

2 cups cooked rice

2 cups chopped purple cabbage

1/2 onion – diced

1 cup grated or slivered carrots

1-5 cloves garlic – chopped

2 or more TBS fresh minced ginger

1 TBS sesame (or other) oil

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DIRECTIONS

Heat the oil in a large wok or saute pan.  Add the onions, & cabbage & saute until they begin to soften.  Add the carrots, rice & ginger & stir to combine & warm through.  Add the garlic and saute another minute or two.  Serve.

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Vegan Spicy Lemongrass & Ginger Beef

Serves 2 very well

INGREDIENTS

3 stalks of lemongrass – cut into 3″ lengths & smashed with the handle of a knife (to bruise them & release the flavor.  The cooked lemongrass is inedible so pick around it in the finished dish.)

8+ ounces seitan (or other meat replacement like – Beyond Meat Chicken or Gardein beef or pork products)

3 dry red chilies (optional – they are quite spicy) – crumbled a bit

3 garlic cloves – chopped

2 or more cups of fresh green beans – trimmed

1 TBS sambal oelek or garlic chili paste (more for extra heat)

3 TBS vegan mushroom or oyster-favored sauce

2 TBS minced ginger

1 TBS ground anise or szechuan pepper

2 TBS dark soy sauce (it gives the seitan that dark & beefy color)

1 TBS liquid aminos (or soy sauce or tamari)

1 TBS shao xing rice wine

2 TBS brown sugar

Potential garnished: sliced red or green jalapeno peppers, basil or mint or cilantro leaves

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DIRECTIONS

Heat the oil in a wok or large pan & add the dry red chilies – if using.  Add the lemongrass & saute a minute or two.  Add the green beans & saute on high heat until they begin to sear a bit.

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Add the remaining ingredients.  Add about 1/4 cup water to aid in steaming the beans a bit & create some sauce.  Heat through – until the sauce thickens.  Serve with rice.

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Spicy Vegan Szechuan Beef & Vegetable Stir-Fry

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2016

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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This is really easy & does not use any ingredients that are especially exotic.  I added WAY too many hot peppers & blasted my face off with this one – so – I will recommend using less spice here than I did.  I used Gardein Beefless Tips that I found in the freezer section of my local Ralph’s.  You can use these or any other meat replacement you prefer.  The ratio of veggies is an entirely personal one.  You can take my suggestions or wing it – or just go straight beef & rice.  Your call.  But it is easy & bursting with flavor!

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Spicy Vegan Szechuan Beef & Vegetable Stir-Fry

Serves 4 with cooked rice

INGREDIENTS

Cooked rice of your choice

2 TBS coconut oil (or other cooking oil)

9 oz meatless beef – defrosted

2 cups broccoli florets

2 bell peppers – seeded & cut into strips

3 carrots – chopped

1 leek or medium onion – chopped

1 large zucchini – chopped

4 oz mushrooms – sliced

1-2 jalapenos or serranos (seeded to lessen the heat) – or to taste – diced

1-3 tsp cornstarch (optional)

for the sauce

2 TBS vegan oyster-flavored or mushroom-flavored sauce

1 TBS minced ginger

1 TBS minced garlic

2 TBS chili garlic sauce (or sambal oelek)

1 TBS liquid aminos (or tamari or soy sauce)

1 TBS dark soy sauce

1 tsp chili oil

1 TBS sesame oil

1 TBS dark berry jam (or molasses or brown sugar)

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INSTRUCTIONS

Cook the rice & set aside.

Mix the sauce & pour it into the bag with the faux beef & smoosh it around to marinate.

Heat the coconut oil in a wok or large fry pan.  I added the leeks & carrots & mushrooms first – because they take the longest to soften.

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Add the fest of the produce.  Broccoli & zucchini cook fastest – so I added them last.  Once the veggies are cooked to your liking, stir in the beef & marinade.  You might want to add a bit of water – but not much.  If the sauce feels too thin – whisk in a tsp of cornstarch.  Mine did not need it but yours might.  Toss to heat through & serve with rice.

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Spicy Vegan Vegetable Fried Rice with Chicken & Romaine Lettuce and 90210: The Musical

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2016

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

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This past weekend, I went to NYC to host 90210: The Musical.    I had no idea what to expect.  I did not know if the writers & cast were talented.  I did not know the take they would have on the show, on my character & maybe even of me.  When they invited me, I had to reconcile to laugh with everyone if I got roasted brutally.  The fact is, I made fun of a lot of the aspects of the show myself – even as I was still shooting it.  Plus – I like to think I am able to laugh at myself – so – fuck it!  I went.  And I am SO HAPPY that I did!!!

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HERE is a little review that includes a short video clip.

The show is brilliant!  Smart, dirty & REALLY funny.  Several females roles are played by men which just adds to the hilarity.  I honestly cannot recommend this show any more highly.  I saw it two nights in a row & I feel like I could watch it infinitely more times.  And what a surreal & amazing experience – to not only see such a large part of my professional life presented this way – but even my character – Emily Valentine.  Such a singular experience.  A highlight in my life.  Truly.

Now – on to food.  Every get overly ambitious about your intentions to eat healthier or come home from the farmer’s market with enough produce to cater a vegetarian wedding?  Ever end up just sorta watching that produce wilt & decay – because you ended up eating Kraft mac & cheese three days in a row or you went out to dinner all week?  SUCKS to watch all that costly food go to waste.

Well – upon my return from NYC, that is where I found myself.  Looking, sadly, at a fuckton of produce that needed eating.  No way to eat it all as separate courses.  Most frustrating was 2-3 heads of romaine lettuce just starting to brown at the edges & along the thick spine.  What to do, what to do?   My freezer is already chock full of frozen leftovers from past slow cooker efforts to use less than robust produce.  Then – I spotted a leftover box of rice from my favorite Thai restaurant – Torung.  Aha!  I would make a stir-fry!  And – guess what?  I decided to add LETTUCE to this stir-fry.  And why the fuck not?  Lettuce is a leafy green – just like spinach or bok choy.  So – I used it & it worked.

This dish is – as is often the case with my recipes – the result of what I had & what I needed to use.  You can customize this any way you want.  Add water chestnuts or baby corn.  Lose the tomatoes.  Lose the serrano peppers.  Add sriracha.  Whateverthefuck you want.  It makes a boatload so – unless you are feeding 6 people or you want to eat lots of leftovers – reduce this recipe – maybe by 50%.

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Spicy Vegan Vegetable Fried Rice with Chicken & Romaine Lettuce

Serves 4-6

INGREDIENTS

1 or more cups of cooked rice

Coconut (or other) oil

10 Brussels sprouts – sliced or shredded

4-6 carrots (I used heirloom and regular) – sliced

2 bell peppers (I used 5 small gypsy peppers) – diced

3 serrano peppers (or to taste) – sliced (remove seeds to reduce heat)

4 mushrooms – sliced

1 head broccoli

1 (9 oz) package Beyond Meat vegan chicken (or whatever brand you find available) – thawed & cubed

10 cherry tomatoes – halved (plus a few extra – quartered – as garnish)

7 scallions – green & white parts – sliced

1 head romaine (or other) lettuce – chopped

Fresh spinach as a bed for the rice – optional

Lime wedges as garnish (optional)

for the sauce

1/4 cup liquid aminos (or soy sauce or tamari)

3 TBS fresh ginger (or less – if you are not big on ginger) – I used a squeezable kind

1/4 chop Shao Xing wine

1 TBS chili garlic sauce

2 TBS hoisin sauce

1 TBS toasted sesame oil

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DIRECTIONS

Heat 1-2 TBS coconut (or other) oil in a wok or very large frying pan.  You might need to add more oil along the way – if things dry out – but that is your call.

The rest of this can really be done any whichaway – just start with the veggies that are take longest to cook first.  I started with the shredded Brussels sprouts because I like how they taste when they get sorta charred.  Here is how I proceeded:

Add the Brussels sprouts & then the carrots & peppers & serranos.

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I added more coconut oil, at this point.  Stir.

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I then literally put the entire head of broccoli in the pan & sliced it off right into the pan.  Seemed less messy that way.  I reserve the stems to steam for my dogs.  Add the mushrooms & chicken.  Combine.  Add the rice.

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Add the tomatoes and scallions (reserving some green scallions for garnish).  Combine & then add the lettuce.

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Stir in the sauce ingredients & heat through.

Serve on spinach (if you want to ) and garnish with scallions & raw tomato.  Lime wedges might be nice, too, though I did not have any.   See?  Easy!

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Vegan Black Jasmine Pork Fried Rice with Egg (Thai Rice Berry)

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2016

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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VeganEgg-packaging

Follow Your Heart came out with a vegan egg (photo above stolen from Google).  The first time I tried it – I was put off by the fact that it is a powder you add water to & that it takes FOREVER to set & become eggy.  It seemed like a chemical rubber to me & I talked shit about it a bit.  When I decided to make a fried rice – it crossed my mind that this egg might work better as part of a larger dish – without the pressure of having to stand on its own.    So – I made it again.  I noticed that the powder even has a very faint eggy-sulfur smell – that I did not notice the first time.  And – this time – I let the pan get very hot before I added the mix.

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And – this time – it came together a bit more quickly.  I added some salt to it before it set & scrambled it until it was no longer wet.  And tasted it.  And, this time, I kinda liked the result.  The visual isn’t perfect but the taste & texture were actually pretty good.  I wonder how a quiche or chilaquiles might turn out with this stuff.  I will experiment & report back.  But – if you crave breakfast eggs – I am changing my thumbs down on these to a pretty enthusiastic thumbs up.   Omelettes might be the ideal way to use this stuff – because added flavors & textures can only help.

One thing – once set – these eggs don’t break up like real egg & so – cut up – they look sorta plastic (visually – see below) and were lost & overwhelmed in this rice.  Just FYI.

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As to this rice dish – it was just an excuse to make my awesome Vegan Char Siu or Chinese BBQ Pork Ribs – above.  Those fuckers are so convincing & delicious – I just had to make them again the very next day!  I also had a myriad of random vegetables to use up & I really wanted to experiment with the vegan egg again – so – this dish was born.  It is a pretty straight-forward stir-fry & you can add anything you want to it or lose anything from it that you don’t like or have around already.    Two notes – the egg gets sorta lost in this so it might be a waste to use them for this dish and – I stirred the chopped “pork” into the stir-fry where the heat sorta steamed their crispy, stickiness away.  In the future – I would top each plate with a portion of the ribs — on top or on the side.

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Also – I made this with my newest rice discover – Thai Rice Berry (black jasmine) rice.  ANY rice will work – but I had this left over so that is what I used.

I saw this new rice at my favorite Thai grocery store – Bangluck.   $10 for 5 pounds – so I could not resist.  I looked it up online & found THIS:

Riceberry  Rice is the new variety of rice that has been bred in Thailand. The rice is deep purple in colour; this rich dark colour is typical of plants that yield high nutrition. Rice berry rice is cross pollination of three hardy and loved rice strains; they are:

  • Thai Hom Mali Race – also known as fragrant jasmine rice, the highest quality and most sort after rice in the world, after cooking it retains its structure but takes on a soft fluffy consistency.
  • Hom Nin Rice – has well known and documented antioxidant properties, but this grain can become a little chewy if it isn’t cooked through.
  • Khao Dawk Mali 105 – a hardy seed which will grow in a broad range of agricultural environments.

The cross-pollination of these three rice plants has resulted in Riceberry Rice, a new and exciting rice variety. Riceberry takes on the best attributes of each of the grains that were used in its inception. The light fluffy texture and flavour from Thai jasmine rice, high in minerals and antioxidants from Hom Nin rice and hardy and high yield characteristics of Khao Dawk Mali 105.

Riceberry Rice Nutrition Profile

Riceberry rice is rich in many antioxidant that help our immune system stay healthy. It contains significant levels of:

  • Beta-carotene
  • Gama Oryzanol
  • Vitamin E
  • Folic Acid
  • Tannin
  • Zinc
  • Fiber
  • Bran Oil

These antioxidants, vitamins and minerals give riceberry rice a nutrition profile that is relatively unique. The dark purple colour it matures signifies it high nutrition content and gives it a unique appearance when served.

The rice is also extremely high in fiber and bran oil, this natural aids digestion and helps keep the stomach free from disease.

Thai Rice Glycemic Index

Riceberry rice has been graded as low-medium in the glycemic index. The abundant fiber and bran oil which it contains helps to reduce the risks of diabetes by hindering the absorption of sugars into the blood through the stomach. It also helps the pancreas function better.

– See more at: http://www.thenaturalhealthmarket.co.uk/riceberry-organic#sthash.388tjdGM.dpuf

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Vegan Black Jasmine Pork Fried Rice with Egg (Thai Rice Berry)

Serves 4

INGREDIENTS

Vegan Char Siu or Chinese BBQ Pork Ribs

3-4 cups cooked rice

2-3 TBS olive or coconut oil

1 small onion – diced

1 large carrot – diced

1 red (or other) bell pepper – diced

1-6 chili peppers (I used 2 serrano & 4 jalapeno – but I love heat)

2 cups purple cabbage (or green or both) – chopped

1 head Swiss chard – ribs removed & chopped

4 radishes – sliced

1 cup peas

4 TBS liquid aminos (or soy sauce or tamari)

1 TBS minced ginger

1 TBS minced garlic

2 Follow Your Heart vegan eggs (optional)

GARNISH – more radish slices and/or lime wedges, sliced scallions or sliced green garlic

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DIRECTIONS

Make the pork ribs & set aside.  When cool enough to handle – chop them up.

If using the eggs – make them, chop them up & set aside.

Heat the oil in a large saute pan or wok.

Basically – just dump everything (except the rice, egg & ribs) in there & cook until the veggies are soft.  You might want to wait until it is close to done before adding the peas so that they don’t get all smooshed.  Add the rice & combine.  My photos show adding the egg & ribs to the pan but I think they would work better added to each serving when you plate the rice.

Plate the portions & top with chopped egg & pork and any garnish you prefer.

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Sriracha Ginger Soy Sugar Snap Peas

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2015

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

~

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These are extremely easy & quick to make.  The hardest part is cutting each of the sugar snap peas in half.  Apparently, you can break the stem end of them & pull down on the string, like a zipper, and string these guys but that didn’t work on mine.  Maybe they were not fresh enough.  I don’t know.  But – if you want to string your beans – knock yourself out.  Mine were great without that step.

I used vegetarian hoisin sauce in these but if you cannot find that (or regular hoisin) – do not be discouraged.  These are awesome without that one ingredient, too.

This really makes just one serving so increase as needed to suit your head count.

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Sriracha Ginger Soy Sugar Snap Peas

Serves ONE as a side dish

INGREDIENTS

8 oz fresh sugar snap peas – strung (see note above) and cut almost in half along the seam  (split them but not totally in half)

2 TBS soy sauce or tamari (I always use low sodium)

1 TBS sriracha

1 tsp sesame oil

1 TBS hoisin sauce (optional)

4 garlic cloves – cut in half or in thirds (you want big chunks so it doesn’t burn)

1 TBS minced fresh ginger (or 3-4 slices about the size of a quarter)

2 tsp olive oil

Sesame seeds – black and/or white as garnish

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DIRECTIONS

Whisk together the soy sauce, sriracha, sesame oil & hoisin sauce.  Set aside.

Prepare your sugar snap peas.

Have everything ready to go because these cook fast.

Heat a pan on HIGH HEAT for a minute & then add the olive oil.  Once the oil is hot, add the garlic & ginger (beware splatter).  Cook one minute & then add the sugar snap peas.  After about 2 minutes, add the sriracha mixture.  Cook on high – stirring continually so the garlic doesn’t burn –  until most of the dressing cooks off – maybe another minute.

Serve with sesame seeds.

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