Saturday, July 23, 2016

Ahi Tuna Poke Bowl with Snap Pea and Edamame Salad


What I love the most about my CSA box is the surprise every Tuesday. While Full Belly Farm sends an email newsletter on Monday announcing what they will be sending, I like to resist that siren call and to open the box to find tomatoes and grapes and basil and potatoes. 

It's like my own Tuesday-afternoon version of Chopped.


Recently one of my mystery ingredients was cabbage. As in more cabbage. As in this is the third time I have gotten cabbage this summer. I never knew there wold be so much cabbage in July. 

While certainly this is the tail end of the season for cabbage, it is the key ingredient in all of your slaw needs this summer.  And what better way to make a slaw than one that accompanies an ahi tuna poke bowl? 



Have you noticed, by the way, the recent popularity in rice bowl cooking? They're everywhereAs in everywhereEverywhere

This fascination with serving food atop of a starch, usually rice but quinoa or barley or freekah or farro have made appearances, seems to have its roots in Asian cooking--Korean bibimbap (one of my favorites) or Japanese chirashi immediately come to mind. The popularity of these grain bowls (and what separates them from, say, a stir fry) is that all of the veggie and meat components are composed atop the starch, and you get to decide how to mix them together. 

And, indeed, rice bowls have moved far from their Asian influence: you can make Mexican, Peruvian, Greek, and yes, even Californian bowls. Have at it, I say.


Sara Forte, of Sprouted Kitchen, has made a lovely contribution to this food trend with her book Bowl + Spoon, which I wrote about here. So, when cabbage showed up in the CSA box, I decided to crack open her little book, jump on this culinary bandwagon, and make this perfectly summery, Hawaiian-influenced poke bowl with a snazzy little slaw of edamame and sugar snap peas on the side. 


It is a little bit of a special occasion bowl (as sushi-grade ahi can be expensive), but it smacks of easy-going dining, begs for a glass of Sauvignon Blanc, and encourages backyard sitting. 

Hop to it, my summer-loving, cabbage-cooking, food-trending, Chopped-challenge-willing friends.





Ahi Tuna Poke Bowl with Snap Pea and Edamame Salad


Yield:
4 Servings 

Ingredients:

3/4 cup rice (brown is fantastic, but choose what you like)

For the Salad:
1 lb sugar snap peas, trimmed and thinly sliced
1 cup shelled edamame beans
2 1/2 cups thinly sliced cabbage
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
2 Tbsp chopped mint
2 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds (black, white, or a combination)
2 tsp yellow miso
1 tsp honey
2 Tbsp toasted sesame oil
2 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
Juice of 1 lime
Pinch of red pepper flakes
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

For the Ahi tuna
1 1/2 pounds sushi-grade ahi tuna
3 Tbsp soy sauce (low sodium is fine)
2 tsp toasted sesame oil
1 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
wasabi paste, sriracha, or your favorite hot sauce
2 green onions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
2 large, ripe avocados
pepper
1 Tbsp sesame seeds
3 sheets of dried nori, crumble

Instructions:
1.  Make the rice according to whatever method you generally use. If you don't have a preferred method (I just use my rice cooker), here's a simple method that takes about 45 minutes, during which you can put together the rest of the recipe. (This recipe for rice is from Pinchmysalt.com): Rinse the rice with cold water for 30 seconds. Bring 3 cups of water and a pinch of salt to a boil over high heat in a heavy pot with a lid. When the water is boiling, add the rice, stir, and partially cover. Cook on medium heat for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, pour the rice into a sieve. Return the strained rice to the pot off of the heat. Cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid, and set aside to allow the rice to steam for 10 minutes. 

2.  Meanwhile, add the peas to a large bowl with edamame, cabbage, green onions, cilantro, and mint. Stir everything together.

3. For the dressing, in another bowl, whisk together the miso, honey, sesame oil, rice vinegar, lime juice, red pepper flakes, and pinch of salt and pepper until smooth. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and toss to coat. Chill the salad until ready to serve.

4. Cut the ahi tuna into 1-inch cubes. In another large bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, sesame oil, vinegar, and a bit of wasabi or sriracha. Add the ahi and green onions and stir gently.

5.  Just before serving, pit and dice the avocado into small cubes. Gently stir them into the ahi with a generous sprinkling of sesame seeds and a hearty grind of pepper. 

6.  Arrange the bowl with a scoop of salad, a scoop of rice, some of the ahi mixture, and crumbled, dried nori on top (which I forgot).

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