‘Bowls’ are having a culinary moment. They’re not exactly salads, not exactly soups. They can be enjoyed at breakfast, lunch or dinner. Today’s bowls are defined as one-dish meals. They are typically packed with a lot of nutritious ingredients. They’re easy to make and are perfect for our busy lives.
Asian cuisines have traditions of one-dish meals like ramen (Japan), pho (Vietnam) and bibimbap (Korea) — all characterized as bowls of fragrant broth, noodles or rice, some sort of protein and fresh vegetables. But the world of bowls has gone global and there is every reason to explore bowls inspired by other parts of the world.
I think I was a little ahead of the curve when I came up with Seafood with Wild Rice and my Green Tea Noodles with Edamame from my first book, The Age Gracefully Cookbook.
Each mouthful provides the taste of the sea with the textures of fresh vegetables and wild rice to create a wholesome, flavorful, and filling one-dish meal. The Omega-3s in the seafood and wild rice smooth and soften the skin. For variety, try adding chicken and sausage to your favorite seafood.
SEAFOOD WITH WILD RICE
1 cup wild rice or a combination of wild and brown rice
4 cups water
2 cups chicken broth
4 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup chopped onion
2 bay leaves
¼ cup chopped carrot
¼ cup chopped celery
¼ cup chopped broccoli
¼ cup chopped red bell pepper
¼ cup chopped yellow bell pepper
½ lb. seafood medley
Sea salt and ground pepper to taste
SWEET AND SPICY BREAKFAST BOWL
This recipe takes classic breakfast ingredients such as eggs (for protein) and maple syrup but completes the flavors and nutrition with nutrient-packed spinach and sweet potato.
5 oz. fresh spinach
3 Tbs. neutral-tasting oil such as avocado oil
1 small onion sliced into thin rings
½ cup sliced white mushrooms (optional)
1 small sweet potato
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 Tbs. real maple syrup
2 cups leftover rice or mixed grains
2 large fried eggs
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Pinch of sea salt
Chili garlic paste or hot sauce for serving
Beauty – Promotes vibrant skin and hair and helps keep eyes healthy
Strength – Builds strength in bones, muscles and joints. Increases bone density and repairs tissue.
AVOCADO/MANGO BLACK RICE BOWL
This Latin-inspired bowl contains black ‘forbidden rice,’ black beans and red cabbage for a generous dose of antioxidants as well as fiber. Avocado, mango and toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds) add vitamins and good fats making it irresistible.
1 ½ cups black rice
2 ½ cups water for soaking the rice
1-15 oz. can of black beans, rinsed
3 small jalapeño peppers, seeded, ribs removed and finely diced
Juice of 2 limes (about 3 Tbs.) plus wedges for garnish
¾ tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
½ tsp. fine sea salt
1 Tbs. olive oil
1/3 cup raw pumpkin seeds
1 large, firm avocado, diced into ½ inch pieces
1 large mango, diced
1 cup shredded purple cabbage
½ cup diced sweet onions (such as Dulce or Vidalia varieties)
1/3 cup crumbled mild cotija, queso fresco or feta cheese
¼ cup loosely packed fresh cilantro leaves
2 Tbs. loosely packed fresh oregano leaves
½ cup pico de gallo
– Anti-oxidant – Prevents and repairs oxidative damage to cells caused by free radicals.
– Beauty – Promotes vibrant skin and hair and helps keep eyes healthy
ASIAN FUSION SHRIMP AND QUINOA
Asian fusion cooking is about using Mediterranean or American ingredients and, possibly, French techniques in classical Chinese, Thai, or Filipino recipes. This dish takes the best of several cultures to make a delicious, FoodTrients-packed meal in a bowl. The quinoa is highly nutritious, but a little bland, but it carries the other flavors and ingredients beautifully.
3-4 cups water
¼ tsp. pink Himalayan sea salt
1 medium-sized stalk of lemongrass, cut into 3-inch pieces
1 cup quinoa
1 lb. peeled and deveined shrimp
¾ cup chopped orange or red bell pepper
¼ cup chopped scallions
1 tsp. crushed garlic
4 Tbs. coconut oil
1 cup crushed tomatoes
¼ tsp. turmeric powder
Salt or salt substitute and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Chef’s Note: If using chicken, cut a skinless, boneless breast (organic or free-range) into 1-inch cubes. Sauté the chicken and vegetables for 5 minutes (Step 3).
– Disease Prevention – Reduces risk factors for common degenerative and age-related diseases like cancer and diabetes.
– Weight Loss – Encourages improved metabolism and digestion