Salads

Recipe—Bok Choy and Carrot Slaw in a Tangy Sesame Soy Vinaigrette

I really wanted to cook some seared ahi the other night and I was looking for the perfect side dish. Well low and behold! There was bok choy in my produce box that week so I knew exactly what to do.  A light and refreshing Asian inspired slaw. It was perfect for the warm summer night and was exactly what my gorgeous piece of ahi needed. Something not too heavy but loaded with flavors that would complement the simplicity of the fish. The dressing for this slaw is tangy, sweet, has a nice sesame flavor, and just a little bite from the fresh garlic. This is great for any Asian inspired dinner you have planned. I also had it with some chicken teriyaki and it was killer! This super fabulous recipe takes less than five minutes to make and is super low cal. Delicious and nutritious!

Note: Dressing can be made a couple of days ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator. Then just toss the salad and the dressing right before serving.

INGREDIENTS
1 tsp garlic, minced
2 tsp sesame seeds (plus more for garnish if desired)
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
3 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp sesame oil
3 tbsp olive oil
2–3 large baby bok choy, thinly sliced (about 4–6 c)
1/2 c shredded carrots

STEPS

  • In a small bowl whisk together the garlic, sesame seeds, honey, soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil, and olive oil until well combined.
  • Pour the vinaigrette over the sliced bok choy and shredded carrots and toss to coat.
  • Garnish with extra sesame seeds if desired.
  • Serve and enjoy!

Recipe adapted from The Cozy Apron.

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Dinners, Soups

Recipe—Spicy Shrimp Noodle Bowl

This is one of those dishes that you look at and think, “It must have taken forever!” Wrong! This dish was on our table in less than 20 minutes from the time I started, and it was so simple. Those are some of the many reasons I love it! I first tried this recipe because I happened to have some bok choy on hand from my produce delivery and some shrimp in the freezer. It was just meant to be! This recipe is packed with wonderful Asian flavors but none of the ingredients are exotic or hard to find. I’m not typically a huge fan of ginger but in this recipe it is what takes it from ordinary to extraordinary so don’t leave it out. This noodle bowl ended up being really filling. My son is a big fan of pot stickers so I fried up a couple of those while this was coming to a boil. They were a great addition to the meal.

Note: For a vegetarian option substitute some tofu for shrimp. 

INGREDIENTS
3 tbsp olive oil
1/2–1 tsp crushed red peppers (depends how spicy ou like your meals)
2 tsp garlic, minced
1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated
1 c shitake mushrooms, sliced
4 baby bok choy chopped
salt and pepper
4 c chicken broth
1.42 oz pack Swanson’s seafood concentrate or 1 c seafood stock
1 1/2 lb medium shrimp, deveined and peeled
6 oz pack chow mein noodles
4 green onions cut into three pieces, then cut lengthwise into thin “sticks”

STEPS

  • In a large soup pot heat the olive oil over medium-high heat.
  • Add the crushed red peppers, garlic, ginger, mushrooms, and bok choy.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • Add the chicken broth and seafood concentrate.
  • Put the lid on the pot and bring to a boil.
  • Add the shrimp and the noodles and cook for 3–5 minutes or until the chow mein is tender and shrimp cooked through.
  • Add in most of the green onions reserving some for garnish.
  • Cook for another 2 minutes, turn off stove and allow pot to sit for another 2–3 minutes.
  • Ladle into bowls and garnish with remaining green onions.

Recipe adapted from Rachael Ray.

Appetizers, Dinners, Sauces

Recipe—Chinese Chicken Meatballs with a Sesame Garlic Hoisin Sauce

I saw a recipe for Asian meatballs made with pork and beef the other day and I thought that a great way to cut some of the calories would be to make something similar but with ground chicken. Two of my son’s favorite meals are chicken teriyaki and spaghetti with meatballs. You should have seen the size of his eyes when I told him we were having Chinese chicken meatballs. His eyes got really big and his mouth dropped open. I think he was excited for the marriage of two of his fave dishes. He really liked the sauce and gobbled dinner up. I served these over rice with steamed veggies but they would also make an excellent appetizer. I must admit the sauce really makes this recipe. It has so many different flavors in it. It really gets your taste buds going. This recipe is fairly quick and very easy. With the number of meatballs it makes it ended up being enough for two dinners so I have some in the freezer ready for a quick and easy dinner in a few weeks.

Note: Toss the cooked meatballs in a crock-pot and double up the sauce, heat on low and you have an awesome and healthy appetizer that will stay warm for hours.

MEATBALL INGREDIENTS
2 lbs ground chicken
2 tsp sesame oil
2 c panko breadcrumbs
1/2 tsp ground ginger
2 eggs
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 c green onions, thinly sliced
salt
sesame seeds and sliced green onions for garnish

SAUCE INGREDIENTS
2/3 c hoisin sauce
1/4 c rice vinegar
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp ground ginger

STEPS

  • Preheat oven to 400º.
  • In a large bowl, mix together all meatball ingredients until well combined.
  • Using an oversized spoon scoop about a ¼ cup worth of the meat mixture and shape into round meatballs. (Mine end up being about 1 1/4″ in diameter. This will yield about 28–32 meatballs.)
  • Place the formed meatballs in a large lightly greased baking dish.
  • Bake for 20–25 minutes or until balls are lightly browned on the outside and no longer pink on the inside.
  • While your meatballs are baking put all your sauce ingredients in a small bowl and whisk together until well blended.
  • Pour the sauce over the hot meatballs and garnish with additional sliced green onions and sesame seeds if desired.