Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Ginger Peanut Rice Bowl (kinda like at...Rumbi Island Grill)

(Okay, so I stole that picture off of the Rumbi Island Grill website.......)

So, as Steve and I were eating a salad with that ginger salad dressing on it, Steve commented that it reminded him of the flavors in one of those rice bowls at Rumbi Island Grill. So, of course, then I HAD to figure out a way to make that! So... I pretty much just altered some other recipes I had, did a little experimenting, and ended up with what we thought was very good! Give it a try.

For the rice:
1 1/2 cups jasmine rice
1 1/2 cups coconut milk
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup water
1 can red beans, drained and rinsed

Put the rice, coconut milk, broth, and water in a pot with a lid. As it starts to get to a boil, you're gonna need to stir it because it's going to be a little thick with that coconut milk in it. You don't want it to all goo to the bottom and burn! So, once it is boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer, put the lid on and let the rice cook, stirring occassionally to ensure all is well. Once all the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender, add in the beans (make sure they are drained and rinsed first). Mix those in and let them heat through. And there you have it, island coconut red beans and rice.
Other Ingredients:
broccoli or asparagus, cut into bite size pieces

celery, choped

carrots, sliced thin

red bell pepper, choped
zucchini, sliced

Chicken breasts
For the chicken:
You could do this a few different ways.....
1) Marinate some chicken breasts in some left over ginger salad dressing then grill it up or cook on the stove top in a skillet. Then cut it into bite size pieces.
2)Cut up some chicken breasts into pieces. Pour some left over ginger salad dressing into a large skillet. Add the chicken pieces, and brown them up and cook them through. Add more of the dressing during the cooking process if needed, enough that all the chicken is coated in a little of it.
3)If you don't happen to just have any leftover dressing, you don't need to marinate the chicken or anything. You will put sauce on it in the end anyway. It's up to you. Or you could just marinate it in a little soy sauce and oil or something.
Set the chicken aside, then add all the veggies to the large skillet along with more of the ginger dressing and saute until desired doneness. (You don't really HAVE to add any dressing in the cooking process. As stated before, you will put sauce on it in the end). I suggest putting the carrots and celery in first, cooking those for a little bit, then add the others because they don't seem to take as long. Put the lid on for a little bit if you want them to get steamed a bit.
When you're ready to eat, plate up some of the red beans and rice, put some chicken and veggies on that, and top it all off with some ginger peanut sauce (NOT exactly the same as the ginger dressing......recipe below) and chopped peanuts!
Ginger Peanut Sauce:
This is a slight variation on the ginger dressing recipe. It omits a lot of the oil and uses more peanut butter, resulting in a thicker, more sauce-like consistency.
1 tsp oil (vegetable or canola)
1 to 2 teaspoons chili oil-- (once again... add it to your desired heat)
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar or seasoned rice vinegar (I use the seasoned rice vinegar, because that's what I have)
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
2 Tablespoons sugar
2 Tablespoons freshly grated ginger (FRESH ginger is so good! don't use the dried stuff!)
3 to 4 Tablespoons of peanut butter
Beat with a wire wisk until smooth (add peanut butter a tablespoon at a time, beating and adding more until reaches desired consistency and taste). Heat in the microwave or in a pot on the stove until heated through. Stir. Put on top of the rice bowls!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Ginger Salad Dressing

OOOOOOHHHHH..... this is so good.......

1/4 cup oil (vegetable or canola)

1 to 2 teaspoons chili oil-- you buy this in the oriental section of the grocery store, usually (probably start out using less if you're not sure how spicy you want it... you can always add more if you taste it and decide you want more. Or if you know you don't like heat, you could just make it without)

1/4 cup rice wine vinegar or seasoned rice vinegar (I use the seasoned rice vinegar, because that's what I have)

2 Tablespoons soy sauce

2 Tablespoons sugar

2 Tablespoons freshly grated ginger (FRESH ginger is so good! don't use the dried stuff!)

optional: 1/2 to 1 Tablespoon (???maybe more....?..or less....?) of peanut butter (the dressing is good without the peanut butter, too, but I like it with a little peanut butter in it because it adds a bit more body and helps the dressing emulsify better... oh, and it tastes good. I pretty much just add it until it tastes how I want it...)

Mix all those ingredients together well and use for various different things!

Once I used it on top of some salmon.... that was quite tasty. You can put in on top of just a normal salad. Delicious.

If you want to try a SUPER GOOD salad.... try the following:


Romaine Lettuce


Strawberries, sliced (or cut in chunks or whatever)

Green Onions, chopped

Candied Pecans (recipe below)

Pork Loin

When we make this salad, we usually just put out all the different components and let people put together their own salad according to their liking. Then, top it with the ginger dressing. Soooo good. Last time my mom tried hers with some mandarin oranges on it as well. I didn't try it, but I bet that would be good too.

For the pork, just cut the loin into about 1/4 inch medalions, season with a little salt and pepper, then cook those up in a frying pan. Then, you can slice those medalions into smaller strips to put on the salad. Don't overcrowd the medalions in the pan, or they won't get that good color on them. You might need to do a couple batches.

For the pecans you're gonna need:

1 cup Pecan Halves

1/2 cup Maple Syrup (whatever you have around that you put on your pancakes and waffles!)

All you do is put a skillet on the stove over medium-low to medium heat and put the pecans in. Pour in the syrup and stir to coat all the nuts. Heat the mixture for several minutes, stirring often. The syrup will bubble and get thicker and thicker. Make sure you don't let it get so hot that it scorches. Keep stirring. You'll notice the syrup getting more and more sticky. Stir! As soon as the mixture is to the point that it's like.... "hard"sticky..... take the nuts out of the pan and put them on a large plate. You'll want to separate them while they are still hot/warm otherwise they will harden and you'll just have one big chunk of candied nuts! Allow them to cool before using them. It might take a couple times to get to where your pecans are the perfect doneness.... my first time I didn't quite cook them long enough, and they were still kind of chewy and not quite.... "crunchy" candied. But, they were still good.