When it’s 93F and you’ve ridden your bike 140 blocks to your favorite farmers market and back, it’s nice to kick back with a homemade boozy slushie. Continue reading
Remember that week that I ate even more salad? Oh, this was it. Continue reading
Reviewing this past week in produce and sharing a recipe for Thai-style basil & chili stir fry sauce. Continue reading
Okay. Jess Sconé, farmers market enthusiast. Continue reading
I forget exactly why I decided to visit the Lents International Farmers Market for the first time, but its casual, down-to-earth vibe pulled me in from the get go. That, and the variety of chili peppers at such tempting prices. I think it may have simply been the notion of checking out all of Portland’s farmers markets, and seeing the unique aspects each one offers. So, when ‘International Farmers Market’ popped up on a list, I was hooked. Continue reading
Sitting at my colorful kitchen table and sorting through the past months on my flickr, it settles in that I’ve been both traveling a bunch and sticking to something of a budget while I’ve actually been home. I credit my … Continue reading
Therefore, there is a grand week ahead. Black, orange and yellow hot peppers to pickle, long beans and white eggplant for a spicy Thai curry, adorable fresh chickpeas for Indian, just-as-fresh prunes for special snacking, sweet corn for roasting, gorgeous … Continue reading
Oh my, I have entered into the big 3-0 birthday week, and what doesn’t that have one thinking about? I did get a stunning set of fancy French skillets from my younger sister as an early gift, which of course, … Continue reading
It’s time for my warm weather motto: I may hate the heat, but I heart farmers markets. I also heart venturing into other neighborhoods and secretly pretending that I live in them. The day will come that I move out of my dear Division St. apartment. That day could bring me further-out southeast into a neighborhood I have strong feelings for – Lents. I’m a frequent visitor to the farmers market, particularly come late July, because the hot pepper prices are unreal. I took my first trip of the season to the market opener on Sunday, and while I was ‘out there’, I stopped by J.C. Rice Noodle for a couple pounds of their fresh namesake, fresh tofu, and continued onto Fubonn for randomness. Once home, I quickly threw together something of a Pad Kee Mow with saucey, soft tofu and roasted peanuts taking the place of the scrambled eggs.
There is nothing quite like the combination of fresh rice noodles you pull apart with your hands, salty soy sauce, hot chiles and fresh yet sweet Thai basil. What a freaking thrill to semi-confidently create things like this (without the worries of fishy sauces) at home. WHAT A FREAKING THRILL.
Spicy Thai Basil Noodles with Soft Tofu and Peanuts
Note: This sauce is based on my own taste buds of the moment. If you like things sweeter/saltier/spicier, do it. I’ll be listing the bolded ingredients in rounds, as I started mixing and cooking like so…
Round 1 of Ingredients:
- 1/2 package soft, water packed tofu, drained
- 2 tablespoons vegetarian stir fry/mushroom sauce, like this
- 2 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons vegetarian fish sauce, like this
- 1 small handful roasted peanuts
- 1 teaspoon ketchup
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon chili garlic paste, like so
- dash of black sesame oil
- pinch turmeric
- pinch black salt
- fresh lime juice, to taste
Mash together the tofu and above ingredients with a fork in a medium or large bowl. Leave some chunks of tofu. Set aside.
- 1.5 cups chopped vegetables: I went with swiss chard, daikon, carrots, asparagus and zucchini
- 1-2 cups of vegan protein of choice: tempeh cubes, tofu strips, seitan, or tofu sheet knots
- Cooking oil of choice
If using a frozen protein, make sure to defrost. Pan fry your protein in 1/2 tablespoon oil on medium heat for 5 minutes, turning over to reach a golden brown. Remove from oil and set aside.
Heat the same pan and add more oil if needed (I didn’t). Add your vegetables and stir fry for an additional 5 minutes over medium heat. Add a tiny splash of vegetable broth or white wine if vegetables begin to stick. You want to keep your vegetables vibrant – do not over cook. Remove from pan and set aside.
In the same pan you keep on using, sauté the following:
- 1 clove minced garlic
- 2 garlic scapes, chopped (whatever, use the top!)
- 1 tablespoon grated ginger
- 1-3 minced Thai chiles – stick to 1 if you’re unsure and grab the Sriracha later!
- 1/2 tablespoon cooking oil
Maybe, just maybe, I’ve become obsessed with rice noodles.
Look, I like noodles in my life, and lately they’ve been of the rice variety. Recently, my fixation was over yellow curry noodles. Things got even better with a curious stop at JC Rice Noodle Shop & Restaurant on SE Foster. I was in the area for another visit to the Lents Farmers Market, and it had caught my eye on the way. I ended up walking out of the nondescript, quiet storefront with a heaping bag of fresh, wide rice noodles (sold 95 cents/lb. – I had asked for 3 and walked out with 5, hence this continued, celebrated fixation) and a pound of equally fresh tofu ($1, but bring a container! they pack it in Styrofoam, shudder). They also sell rice sheets, and rice noodle rolls, but I wasn’t sure if they had a vegan version of the latter, as I saw a mention of pork filling.
Anywhoo, I’m almost in a state of shock over these soft noodles. You can obviously tell the difference between a package of fresh noodles (again, usually on Styrofoam) vs. dried, and these super fresh noodles just take the (rice) cake.
What I’m saying is, if you have access to fresh rice noodles, seek them out, or try making your own! They’re fresher, you get to buy in bulk, and skip excess packaging – win, win, win.
The Pad See Ew above started with scrambled tofu, seasoned with turmeric, black pepper, and soy sauce. It was modified from the Thai River Noodles recipe on About.com. The Karee Yellow Curry Noodles were based on these Khao Soi Yellow Curry Noodles. Both dishes utilize vegetarian fish sauce.
Some more shots of rice noodlin’, and a bonus behind-the-scenes look at the filming of the cinematic trailer for The Vegan Revolution….with Zombies.