two irresistible sauces, vegetarian salad rolls, and cooking artichokes!

lately i haven’t been able to spend as much time on this blog as i’d like, and i’ve truly missed you! there are two important reasons: one is that i’ve been busier with work (the one that’s supposed to pay a few bills), and the other is that once again, spring (now almost summer) has sprung, and i find myself in the oh-so-familiar position of needing to shed a few pounds…which means i’m trying (not) hard (enough) to eat lighter meals (as in salad, salad, salad, smoothie, juice, salad, juice, an occasional cardboard aka brown rice cake, green smoothie…you get the picture). along those lines there are a few treats i’ve been able to enjoy without feeling guilty or like i’m cheating (who? me? never!): salad rolls (or spring rolls) are super easy to make and even easier to enjoy with this fast and simple spicy peanut sauce which goes with almost everything. artichokes simply boiled are another treat we’ve been enjoying with our favorite lemony dijon sauce that also can be used in so many ways (great as a salad dressing). all you need to make the spring rolls happen is rice paper rounds (no cooking necessary-just soak in a plate of water for less than a minute on each side), fresh herbs, and any and all vegetables you enjoy. this time i added quickly baked sprouted organic tofu (recipe for baked tofu & vegetarian ceviche here). what really makes the rolls become a satisfying meal is the following peanut sauce:
minette’s quick & easy peanut sauce: 

  • 2-3 tbs organic peanut butter (use peanut butter that is peanuts only-no additives)
  • about 1/4 cup (more or less) coconut milk
  • 1-2 tsp sriracha sauce (or other favorite hot sauce or cayenne pepper will do)
  • 1-2 tbs soy sauce 
  • 2-3 tsp fish sauce (optional)
  • 1-2 tsp fresh lime juice
  • 1-2 tsp brown sugar or raw honey
blend together, then add very finely chopped cilantro-if the consistency is too liquid, add more peanut butter. taste and adjust ingredients as necessary.

to put together the spring rolls: moisten the rice paper one at a time quickly on each side in a plate with water then place on a dry plate and add lettuce, then finely sliced vegetables (cucumbers, red and yellow bell peppers in this case), then sliced baked tofu (or chicken or beef) fresh mint &/or cilantro. begin wrapping by folding the bottom over, then bringing the two sides in tightly-the rice paper sticks together. you can store these in the refrigerator for a few hours (lightly covered and not too close to each other) prior to serving.

cooking artichokes, and lemony dijon sauce:

to prepare artichokes for boiling, cut the tops off slightly, then snip the sharp ends of each “leaf” with your kitchen scissors. stand artichokes up in a deep pot, then add water (not covering the artichokes-about 1/3 to 1/2 way up), sea salt (1-2 tbs), and 1/2 of a fresh lemon. bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, cover the pot, and allow them to cook for about 25-30 minutes or until you can easily pull a leaf out. remove from water, turn upside down, and allow them to drain. serve with this delicious sauce (chilled):

  • 1-2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • sea salt & freshly cracked pepper to taste
  • 2-3 tbs fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbs dijon mustard
  • 2 tbs good quality grated parmesan cheese
  • 2-3 tbs sour cream or organic mayonnaise 
  • 1 tsp very finely minced shallot
  • 1-2 tsp finely minced fresh herb of choice (dill, tarragon, parsley…)

taste and adjust ingredients as necessary
blend well, then chill and serve.

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2 comments on “two irresistible sauces, vegetarian salad rolls, and cooking artichokes!

  1. Pingback: how to whip up a simply green {curry} sauce that saves the day {or meal} | Cooking Minette

  2. Pingback: a lesson in {yummy} restrictions: vegetarian rolls with oyster mushrooms and shishito peppers | Cooking Minette

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