White Girl Gingered Cabbage & Corn Congee

*White Girl Gingered Cabbage & Corn Congee

 This is an incredibly comforting and healing food. It is reminiscent of a Chinese egg drop soup, the broken rice lends a rich, starchy consistency to the soup that just feels amazing going down. I had squirreled away the most gorgeous corn this past summer and in lieu of BEING DONE WITH THIS WINTER and getting ready for the spring….I pulled it out of the freezer. Of course the ingredients can change but the combination was so satisfying plus the addition of the Beyond the Meat vegan chicken…it just a bowl of yum. I love this as a breakfast too!

White Girl Gingered Cabbage & Corn Congee

6 strips of Beyond Meat Vegan No Chicken, thawed, cut into small pieces

3/4c white broken rice or short-grain white rice

1 vegetable bouillon

1/2c yellow or red split dal

2-inch piece of ginger, minced or grated

2 stalks celery, medium dice or cut on the bias

1/4 small head of green cabbage, chopped

2 teaspoon salt + more to taste (I add ½ smoked salt, ½ pink)

½ large onion, minced

2 clove garlic, minced

1c corn niblets

2T coconut oil

1/2t smoked chipotle powder

6 to 8 cups boiling water

In a large pot, heat up 2t of coconut oil. Add in a pinch of the minced ginger, a pinch of minced garlic and about 1T of the minced onion. Sauté the vegetables over medium high heat just until golden. Add in the chopped cabbage and continue to sauté over medium high heat, just until tender, about 3-5 minutes. Remove from the pot and set aside.

In the same pot, add the remaining coconut oil. Add the onions, ginger, garlic and celery and sauté over medium heat just until golden. Add in rice and the split peas and the vegetable bouillon. Cover with about 4-5 cups of boiling water and mix well. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to low. Allow the mixture to cook partially covered for at least 45 minutes, stirring frequently, adding water if necessary- there should be plenty of water for the porridge to ‘grow’ into. After about 30 minutes, add in some of the salt and chipotle and check for seasonings. It should be thickening as the rice and the dal start to break down. Add water in as necessary to achieve the desired consistency- I prefer mine on the thicker side, but still very much soup like. Overall, it should be ready after about an hour of cooking but will only get softer over time.

In the last minutes of cooking, add in the corn, the vegan chicken, and the sautéed cabbage.

I like to also add in some fresh ginger at the end to give it a fresh kick.

Salt and pepper to taste…this IS comfort food.

Sick White Girl Noodle Soup

So ya…I overtrained…got sick. I walked out into the cold air on Sunday and like a slap in the face, I was sick. Just like that. So now I am eating simple foods and resting…a lot. I have made this soup for the past two days and I am convinced that practice is mastery- the more you do, the better you or it becomes- the broth in this case. It is a simple, clear broth- I didn’t want tamari or that soy sauce taste and I didn’t want the bouillon taste- I wanted that full flavorful taste of asian broths that appear almost clear, nothing floating around in it, nothing to get in the way of the taste. The first night I tried with garlic and I found that, tho it was tasty, it had that raw garlic taste that to me seemed a little bit overwhelming. Last night I omitted the garlic and stuck with the ginger and onions. I think I am in love. Scallions would be even better I suspect. The broth takes less than 10 minutes to make- less even- then I added in beautiful local veggies; nappa cabbage, carrots, fresh spinach. You could definitely expound on this premise- flavor the broth with mushrooms etc- this was me, in a pinch, sick, after work- and it was D E L I C I O U S.

Sick White Girl Asian Noodle Soup

Simple Broth for Sick White Girl Asian Noodle Soup 

6c water

½ onion, coarsely chopped

2” fresh ginger, grated

1t sesame oil

1t pink salt

Put everything in a pot, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5-10 minutes.

Strain the broth through a fine mesh sieve into a large heatproof pitcher (I use my Vitamix container). Discard the vegetables. Pour the broth back into the pot and then proceed to add fresh veggies, cooked rice noodles. This is the simplest, clear broth and it is just so easy and perfect for a pick me up or when you are not feeling full force to sip on.

Sick White Girl Asian Noodle Soup

3-4c Simple Broth

1 carrot, cut into desired shapes

3 leaves nappa cabbage, thinly shredded

1 large handful fresh spinach, trimmed and washed well, thinly shredded

1 serving rice vermicelli

1t hot sesame oil

optional: you could add tofu cubes, mushrooms, baby corn, water chestnuts etc. While I was sick, simple was best.

Over medium heat, add the veggies except the spinach and heat up only until they carrots turn bright and are just tender. Add the noodles (uncooked if quick cooking, use cooked if it is a longer cooking pasta or noodle). Add in the hot sesame oil. Taste and adjust for saltiness.

In a bowl, place the fresh spinach in and then ladle the soup and noodles over- this will cook/wilt the spinach keeping most of the antioxidants intact.

Fricken delicious.

Ellen’s AWESOME White Girl KimChee

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I FRICKEN LOVE KIMCHEE.….I’m not sure what I love about it most, making it or eating it. There is something about the process of making it that has culture, devotion and love wrapped in the creation of this amazing fermented food. It is said that whatever you send into the making of it will be in the end result… So like this morning, I was working LOVE into this latest batch, and to drive the point home, I labeled it on the glass to “feed” the ferment. This is so easy and seems like it would be much more complicated but it is so simple, and could easily be made in a small urban kitchen. You can vary the veggies, change the seasonings or could go straight up traditional. Below ismy take on the best fricken KimChee. I used local cabbage, carrots, onions, and garlic- but use what you have available to you!

Cabbage Prep

1 head Nappa Cabbage

water to cover the leaves

3T pink salt

Pull the leaves off whole from the base of the cabbage and wash well, trimming off any parts you wouldn’t want to consume (ends, dark spots).

In a LARGE non-reactive bowl like glass or true stainless steel (or plastic but I’m not a fan), line the leaves in and with each layer, sprinkle salt over them, then continue to layer the leaves, salting them, layering new leaves etc. Gently pour enough water over the top of the salted leaves then place a large plate (or two) to keep the leaves immersed. Leave this overnight. When ready to use them, drain the water off and rip the leaves into desired size

Ellen’s AWESOME KimChee

1 head prepared salted Nappa Cabbage leaves- torn up into small pieces

1/2 of one onion, thinly sliced

3 cloves garlic, smashed and minced

1/2 of one red bell pepper, thinly sliced

1 carrot, shredded

2″ piece of fresh ginger, grated

1t dried chili pepper ( more or less to suit your spice)

1-2T Pink salt ( I believe in going heavier in the salt, so taste your mix along the way to add more if necessary.

2t smoked chipotle powder

1T raw agave

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In a large bowl, toss all of the ingredients together and massage the veggies and spices together for a good 5-6 minutes to break down the veggies- the juices will start to be released- you want this! This is where you massage into the mix whatever you want or desire, LOVEPEACE,HAPPINESSPOWER or all of them!! Mind your thoughts!!!  No one gonna want to eat your bad mood- including you!!!
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Have a clean bell jar or lock lid glass container ready to go, quart size. Start by putting some of the mix into the jar and pack it down firmly each time you add more with the top of your fingers. Add all of the remaining liquid the mix has created, this is the brine (filled with probitiotics and if you are lucky to have more, it is a great addition to savory green juices!!)

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Leave about an inch or 2 at the top of the jar/container and then close it up tightly. This is where I literally write on the jar what is “cooking”. You leave this gorgeous concoction on the counter at room temperature for 2-3 days (less if it’s super warm out).

After about 2-3 days it’s ready to eat! Put the mix into the fridge to slow down the ongoing fermentation- which will continue in the fridge, making it more sour and even more flavorful. The longer you let it ferment, the more beneficial bacteria there will be.

Because your KimChee is living, always use a clean utensil when dipping into it!

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Asian Cole Slaw

*asian cole slaw

Asian Cole Slaw

Deliciously crisp and fresh tasting- make this and no one will know that there is anything “special” about this slaw other than it’s awesome taste.

1 small green cabbage, thinly sliced, or shredded (4CUPS)

1 carrot, grated

Salt

Dressing:

1/4c Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1T Hot Sesame Oil

3T Apple Cider Vinegar

2T Agave Nectar, or maple syrup

2t brown rice vinegar

1t ume vinegar

Salt and pepper to taste

2T toasted sesame seeds

In a large bowl, place the shredded cabbage and salt it generously, allow it to sit for several hours, even overnight with a plate on top. This will release the liquid in the cabbage, which you will drain out. This removes any bitterness and makes the cabbage more digestible and more tender.

After draining, add in the other ingredients and toss well. Serve chilled.