BBQ Bean Plate


OMG! This was so good and so easy. And can be quick, too, if you have a pressure cooker. The BBQbean recipe came from the Thug Kitchen. I didn’t bother to make Baked Spanish Rice. I had roasted kabocha pumpkin and steamed sweet potato that I incorporated here. An awesome recipe. A can of chipotle pepper in adobo sauce is used, which is kind of cheating, but hey, it’s a secret that everybody knows.

Ingredients for BBQ Bean:
1/2 yellow onion
3 Tbsp tomato paste
1/2 head of garlic
4 chipotle peppers and 1 Tbsp sauce (or 5 Tbsp chipotle sauce)
1/4 cup water or vegetable broth
2 Tbsp orange juice
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tbsp molasses
1 tsp tamari
3 cups cooked pinto beans

Ingredients to make a plate:
1 cup cooked brown rice/serving
1/2 avocado/serving
1/4 cup salsa (tomato salsa/grilled peach salsa/mango salsa)/serving
1 or more of following;
3 slices of roasted pumpkin or squash
1/2 roasted or steamed sweet potato (sliced)
a few leaves kale (stems removed, and steamed for 1 minute)

  1. Chop onion roughly. Peel and crash garlic cloves. Put all of BBQ beans ingredients except beans in a blender or a food processor, and run it until the sauce becomes smooth.
  2. Heat the sauce in a medium pan until it becomes bubbly. Add cooked pinto beans. Cook additional 5-10 minutes.
  3. Pile each ingredient on a plate. Enjoy!



Vegan Rice Bowl with Baked Tempeh


I love rice bowls. All the goodies mingle with each other bind with citrous tamari sauce. A healthy satisfying meal. A dear friend of mine always complains about a dish like this saying “But you have to make so many different things to create one dish! I can never do that.” Am…it’s kinda true, but everything is so easy to make and if you already have left over roasted brussels sprouts like I do here in the picture, this is a 30-minute-cooking.

Ingredients (enough for 4 servings):
4 cup cooked brown rice (1 cup/serving)
8 oz tempeh
2 small broccoli heads
pickles (1 daikon radish, 1/2 small carrot, 1 lb kirby cucumbers)
tamari or soy sauce
2 Tbsp maple syrup
1/2 tsp hot sesame oil
2 tsp salt
3 Tbsp sugar
5 Tbsp rice vinegar
1 Tbsp lemon juice (yuzu or lime juice works as well)

Quick Pickles
Daikon + Carrot:
Peel and matchstick daikon radish and carrot in a similar size. Put them in a container with a lid. Mix 5 Tbsp rice vinegar, 2 Tbsp sugar, and 1 tsp salt in a small pan. Heat it until everything is dissolved. Pour it over the vegetables. Put the lid on. Shake it. Let it sit at least 30 minutes before serve. Keep refrigerate the leftovers.

Kirby Cucumbers: Slice 1 lb kirby cucumbers in 1/4″ thickness. Put them in a container with a lid. Sprinkle 1 Tbs sugar and 1 tsp salt. Put the lid on. Shake it. Let it sit at least 20 minutes before serve. Keep refrigerate the leftovers.

Baked Tempeh
Slice tempeh 1/2″ thickness. In a small bowl, mix 3 Tbs tamari, 1 Tbs maple syruyp, 1/2 tsp hot sesame oil. Marinate tempeh slices in a shallow bowl for at least 10 minutes. Drain and toast them dark in an oven toaster on a foil or a baking sheet.

Steamed Broccoli
Divide broccoli into small florets. Peel tough skins and slice the stem. Steam them until they become bright green about 3 minutes.

Citrus Sauce: Mix 2 Tbsp tamari, 1 Tbsp lemon juice, 1 Tbsp maple syrup, and 2 Tbsp water in a small bowl.

Assemble Rice Bowl: Assemble the rice bowl in a big bowl in any way you want. Sprinkle the citrus sauce at last. You don’t need it much because all toppings are already seasoned.


Roasted Vegetable Rice Bowl

Roasted Vegtable RIce Bowl

Roasted Vegetable Rice Bowl

When outside temperature drops down below 50 ºF, Sunday evening is a roastie night for me. I go to a corner stall of Thompkins Square Park Farmer’s Market right by my apartment during the day. Today I picked up a butternut squash,  an acorn, parsnips, carrots, and apples. I love Quintessence’s green house dressing. I tried to create it in my way. I was not successful to recreate their flavor, but I made a pretty good green dressing. I thought my green dressing was especially good on roasted zucchini, fresh tomatoes, and brown rice.

Ingredients (makes plenty of 2 bowls):
2 or more of roasted vegetables (acorn, parsnip, carrot, zucchini were used here)
1 fresh tomato (chopped)
2 cups cooked brown rice

For Green Dressing:
3 scallions
1 garlic clove (pressed)
1 Tbsp grated fresh ginger
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp your choice of herbs (oregano, thyme, rosemary, sage, basil)
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

  1. Roast vegetables. Halve acorn. Scoop out seeds. Slice in 1/2″ thickness. Slice parsnip, carrots, and zucchini in 1/4″ thickness. Drizzle olive oil over vegetables and lightly toss. Line them up on baking sheets without overwrapping each other. Roast them at 360-375ºF for 20-30 minutes until they are tender. Carrots and parsnips take almost the same time, so you can put them on a same baking sheet. Set a timer for 10 minutes and check them every 10 minutes.
  2. Make dressing. Chop scallions roughly. Put all dressing ingredients in a food processor or a blender. Process until it becomes smooth.
  3. In a big bowl, scoop cooked brown rice. Pile up as much as roasted vegetables you like on top of it. Scatter chopped tomato. Serve with the green dressing.

*What you see dark brown sticks on the upper right corner of the image is kimpira gobo. I had it made, so I just throw it in. It was a good combination.

Peanut Butter Dressing for Anypathing Goes Salad

Peanut Butter Dressing for Anything Goes Salad

Peanut Butter Dressing for Anything Goes Salad

This peanut butter dressing is very versatile. You can use it over fresh greens and/or rice, noodles, and cooked vegetables and potatoes. I used to make this dressing all the time, but totally forgot about it for years. Today, baked sweet potatoes on the kitchen counter, left over from last night’s roasties, were calling for it. I list what I used here in the picture, but be creative. Other vegetables good to put in are endless: tomato, lightly steamed broccoli/cauliflower, cooked potato,  beans sprout, vegetarian ham, tempeh, firm tofu, any lettuce or baby greens, spinach…

Ingredients for 2 servings
Dressing: 1/4 cup peanut butter, 1/4 cup hot water, 1Tbsp soy sauce or tamari, 1 Tbsp rice vinegar, 1/2 Tbsp honey, 1 Tbsp grated ginger, dash of cayenne or a few drops of hot sesame oil (optional), crashed or halved peanuts (optional garnish)

  1. Measure peanut butter into a small bowl. Pour hot water. Whisk quickly until smooth. Add the rest of the dressing ingredients. Mix well.

Salad: 1 cup cooked brown rice, 1 small sweet potato, 1 scallion, 1 celery stalk, 1 small cucumber, 4 kale leaves, 1 small carrot, 1 tofu cutlet (a.k.a. thick fried tofu, 6.5 oz)

  1. Steam or bake sweet potato.
  2. Chop scallion, celery stalk small. Slice cucumber. Shred or thinly slice carrot. Remove stems out of kale leaves. I do this just by hands. Chop the leaves.
  3. Drain tofu cutlet. Rinse with hot water. Pat it dry. Slice 1/2″ thickness. Put soy sauce in a small plate. Dip sliced tofu in soy sauce both side. Bake them in an oven toaster until surface become dry about 3 minutes. Dip them in soy sauce again. Toast again. Cut them bite size or use them as they are.

Place all the salad ingredients in a big bowl. Pour 1/2 of the dressing all over. Mix them. Eat.

Sunday’s Menu 12/23

Green Goddess

Green Goddess

Breakfast: Coffee, Green Goddess Shake

Lunch: Fried Rice with Vegan Smoked Chicken Ham, Kale, Green Pepper, Carrot, Onion, Avocado, Sesame Seeds, Taro Pastry—M said this it is the best fried rice ever! The secret is the vegan smoked chicken ham.

Dinner: Miso Udon Soup, Mustard Leaf Dumplings

Best Fried Rice

Best Fried Rice

Miso Udon and Dumplings

Miso Udon and Dumplings

Tuesday’s Menu 12/18

Green Goddess

Green Goddess

Breakfast: Coffee, Green Goddess Shake

Lunch: Falafel Plate from Mamoun’s—believe it or not, I finished the whole thing.

Dinner: Japanese Dinner (Avocado Sashimi, Kimpira, Soy Beans, Tofu from last night, Boiled Spinach, Sweet Brown Rice)—M was not going to be home for dinner, so I didn’t cook, just gathered things up and warmed rice. My mom calls a dinner like this “Soshoku” (The Simple Meal). I was perfectly happy.

Mamoun's Falafel Plate

Mamoun’s Falafel Plate

Japanese Dinner (AKA left overs form the last few nights)

Japanese Dinner (AKA left overs form the last few nights)


Thursday’s Menu 11/15

Green Goddess

Kale, Sweet Potato, Avocado Dinner


Breakfast: Coffee, Green Goddess Shake

Lunch: Sesame Noodles, Beet Stew, Yakimochi

Dinner: Kale, Sweet Potato, Avocado, Brown Rice, Tomato—a quiet Japanese dinner. Love it.

Sesame Noodles, Beet Stew, Yakimochi