There is definitely something to be said about a delicious and satisfying bowl. These types of salads are extremely easy to pull together and are a real life saver for weekday lunches the reason being that you can make a large batch of your base ingredient, like in this case brown rice, and you’ll have enough for the entire week. From there, you will add the toppings you want, like beans, vegetables, fruits, seeds, etc! The possibilities are endless and you’ll truly feel satisfied until dinner time after eating one of these, let me tell ya!
For this particular bowl, I let my mind guide me. I knew I wanted to use brown rice and navy beans since I had some on hand. I already had a dressing in mind since it’s one of my go-tos (which I just talked about in my previous post), although I decided to add in some fresh dill at the last minute to change the flavour entirely!
So far I had a brown rice base, some navy beans and a delicious dill tahini dressing. I knew I wanted to add some greens so I went for another one of my go-tos; broccoli. From there, I looked at my vegetable drawers in my fridge and noticed the bok choy. This instantly became a bowl with an Asian twist. Final touches that we’re available to me were the sprouts and avocado which are really no-brainers.
The final ingredient came to me as I started assembling the bowl. KIMCHI. Of course, this spicy and tangy Korean condiment screamed my name the second I steamed the boy choy. Kimchi is full of probiotics which makes it great for your digestion, on top of being simply delicious. This hack essentially turns store-bough sauerkraut into this Korean condiment. Like Kimchi, sauerkraut is also a fermented food made primarily from cabbage. Their fermentation process creates beneficial enzymes, Vitamin Bs, Omega-3 fatty acids, all sorts of probiotics and on top of that, preserves the nutrients in the raw ingredient(s) used while making them easier to digest. While both kimchi and sauerkraut originate from different parts of the world; kimchi from Korea and sauerkraut from Germany, they essentially are very similar. Unfortunately, being from Korea, kimchi is typically made with fish products (i.e. fish sauce or ground sardines/oysters/fish) and tends to not be vegan when you buy it from a store. On top of that, there are not that many stores close to my house that even sells the stuff… I have recently started doing this hack for a few many reasons:
1. I just heard of it, saw this trick in one of Mommy Tang’s videos. You could say Mommy Tang is the Kimchi Queen/Connoisseur , so if this trick not only comes from her but also has her stamp of approval, that’s enough for me
2. The base of this wannabe kimchi is sauerkraut. Sauerkraut is not only easily obtainable in my part of the world, but it’s also a lot cheaper than kimchi! Win win.
3. Texture. As much as I love kimchi, the texture of it is still something I am getting used to. I’ve always been a big texture person when it comes to food and I need some time to get use to weird different textures. I find that doing this kimchi hack enables me to get the flavour of kimchi without having to deal with its typical texture. The fact that it’s in smaller pieces makes it easier to add to homemade sushi as well, take a look at this Instagram post.
To finish it all off, I topped the bowl with some alfalfa sprouts. I’ve been on a real sprouts kick lately, like with many foods in my repertoire, I often go in phases or eating a lot of something or not eating it at all. Seems like ingredients sometimes just vanish from my brain until I notice it at the store and get obsessed again. I’ve been buying these alfalfa sprouts from my local store which is the only kind they carry unfortunately, which is quite restricting considering there are hundreds of different kinds. On top of that, sprouts are so cheap to grow yourself that it really doesn’t compare to what it costs you to purchase them. I’ll post a guide on how to grow your own sprouts at home in the upcoming weeks so we can all eat healthy vegan cheap diets together.
- Kimchi Hack (about 10-25 servings)
- 2 cups sauerkraut
- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- 1½ tbsp gochugaru
- 2 tsp garlic powder or 3 cloves of fresh garlic, minced
- 2 tsp white sugar or coconut sugar
- Garlic Dill Tahini Dressing (about 5-6 servings)
- 1 celery stalk
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp tahini
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp water
- ½ tbsp garlic powder or 2 cloves of fresh garlic
- Bowl (1 serving)
- ½ cup brown rice cooked
- ½ bok choy steamed
- ½ cup white navy beans cooked
- ¼ cup broccoli steamed
- ½ avocado grilled (optional)
- 1 green onion thinly sliced
- alfalfa sprouts to taste
- Cook the brown rice as per the package’s instructions. I cooked mine in my instant pot (pressure cooker), to do so, I simply rinced the rice well, placed it in the instant pot with a 1 to 1 ¼ ratio of water and cooked it for exactly 21 minutes on high pressure. Alternatively you can do this in a standard rice cooker or on the stove top, just make sure to adjust your water ratio and cooking time.
- Make the wannabe kimchi by placing the sauerkraut in a large frying pan.
- Cook on low to medium heat for about 1-2 minutes, then add in the soy sauce, black pepper and mix well, let cook for another minute or so.
- Finally, add in the garlic powder, sugar and gochugaru and mix well, take off the heat. If you have no idea what this stuff is, check out my resources page!
- If you will not be using the kimchi right away, pack it into a mason jar and place in the fridge once it’s cooled down.
- Prepare your dressing by placing the celery, lemon juice, tahini, nutritional yeast, apple cider vinegar, water, garlic powder in a blender and blend until very smooth. Add in the fresh dill and pulse a few times.
- Steam the broccoli and bok choy in a vegetable steamer for 3 minutes or so, the second the broccoli is bright green, turn off the heat and keep covered until ready to serve.
- Grill the avocado, although this is optional if you’re pressed for time.
- Warm up the navy beans if you’re using canned ones.
- To assemble the bowl, layer the rice on the bottom, the start adding your ingredients in the portions you’re wanting to eat; navy beans, broccoli, bok choy, avocado, dressing, kimchi and sprouts.