I have a bit of food porn for you this morning :)
In my quest to avoid wheat for a week (like I mentioned in my last post), I've been forced to step out of my usual veg comfort zone. I only had meat once since the holidays (and I didn't even enjoy my meal!), still avoiding ALL dairy because of my stomach and now wheat. What's a girl to eat other than just salads? Lasagna? Not happening. Vegetable sandwiches? Um...bread...hello! A whole lot of rice that's for sure! And fruits, veggies and nuts of course. Oh, and yes, I did have some dark chocolate.
What? I didn't say I was going to stay away from chocolate! You didn't seriously expect me to stop eating all things yummy all at once, did you? I didn't think so! lol. But I do have some "non-vegan-full-fat-and-made-of-white-flour" mini-cupcakes in my freezer, and for some reason that eludes me, I have not been tempted by! Normally, those puppies would have been long gone by now.
Sorry, I digress...
So, in stepping out of my food comfort zone, I finally decided to make this recipe I had been wanting to try, from my Vegetarian Times magazine from last July/August. The recipe calls for soba noodles, but I can't find that in my little town. So brown rice pasta it is!
I only recently tried brown rice pasta for the first time (I'll admit, I tried it out of curiosity at first), and I was pleasantly surprised at the great texture it has and tastes great! So much better than whole wheat pasta. Considering I'm a white pasta (or tri-color) kinda gal, it says a lot about how good these are! If you've never had rice pasta, just give it a try, you will be so surprised! I never realised how "heavy" I felt after eating normal pasta because eating these leaves me ready to jump around and carry on with my day, not for a nap. And this left over rice pasta in my cupboard came to the rescue on a night I was craving carbs!
I'd just like to point out the new bowls I bought last week... perfect for this kind of meal. I don't remember when was the last time I ate with chopsticks... I was maybe 18? I think it made eating this that much better. Fun even! The bowls even have a slit so you can rest your chopsticks on top. Ha ha, sorry, I know I can be a dork sometimes. I really enjoy eating out of these bowls waaaayyy too much. But whatever. It makes me happy!
OK, enough of my silly rambling, I'll share the recipe now ;)
Rice Noodle Salad with Ginger Peanut Dressing
- 6 oz brown rice noodles
- 1/2 cup organic peanut butter (or almond butter would do)
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1 Tbsp agave nectar (or maple syrup)
- 1 Tbsp minced fresh ginger
- 2 tsp low-sodium soy sauce
- 1 clove garlic, peeled
- 1 Tbsp lime juice
- 1 tsp fresh lime zest
- 1/2 cup cilantro, divided
- 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and sliced
- 1 small red bell pepper, sliced (1 cup)
- 1 large carrot, grated
Puree peanut butter, vinegar, agave, ginger, soy sauce, garlic, lime juice, lime zest and 1/4 cup cilantro in a blender or food processor until smooth and creamy, adding 2 to 3 Tbsp warm water to thin, if necessary.
Cook rice noodles according to package, and drain.
Prepare the veggies while the noodles are cooking. Toss together noodles, veggies and peanut sauce mixture. Garnish with remaining cilantro.
Now, how easy was that? I can honestly say, I made this entire dish in about 15 minutes flat! It's going to be a weekly staple in my kitchen from now on, I can assure you. Now go on and try it, you'll be glad you did.
Chopsticks optional, but strongly recommended!