We have been having fabulously beautiful weather that just begs for flavors that are a little bolder. After the majesty that was my first go at quinoa, I had some more and wanted to make something a little less summery last week for a healthy dinner. It was quick and easy and turned out great!
I love Asian food. All of it. I was lucky enough to live in Japan for 4 years growing up, and I’m pretty sure it was while living there that I decided I needed to cook all the time and eat everything in sight.
My really healthy parents are so proud.
While I was in college I lived in Japan again, but with a host family in Osaka instead of Tokyo, where I had lived before. My host mother, Keiko, was a fabulous cook and had mad skillz when it came to cooking a few things on Sunday and preparing several meals throughout the week using several ingredients or incarnations of the same thing over and over again while still making each meal different and special. This saved her time and money, which was essential since she worked 12 hours a day and had to feed 3 kids, me, and a rude husband each night!
I’ve noticed since moving back to America (I lived in Japan for 4 years and think I”m Japanese about 97% of the time), I noticed that Asian Salad, Sesame Chicken Salad, or some variation of the former appear on a wide variety of restaurant menus from Wendy’s to upscale fusion restaurants.
Some of them are great, some of them are gross.
I made this salad last night using a dressing that I believe has the good qualities of a generic soy-based dressing without any of the bad (read: chemicals, sugar, anti-caking agents, animal parts) ingredients from restaurant versions of this salad. This is a veggie-only presentation, but throw some grilled chicken on this bad boy and call it a meal!
One of my favorite things that we got at the farmer’s market the day we made quinoa salad was fresh okra. I’d never cooked with it before, but my mom used frozen okra to make gumbo all the time when we were growing up, and it was one of my favorite things she made and I wanted to try to cook with fresh gumbo.
We have not, however, been gaining any weight or feeling bad about our bodies. We’re above that crap.
Last week Jay and I were going to different football games but both needed to contribute food, and I’d been wanting to make my own pimiento cheese for awhile. We made a big batch and both took some, and it turned out great!