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Sweet & spicy, quick and easy, delicious and healthy. Celebrate the Chinese New Year with flavor and color!
Can we get something out of the way before I move on to this super delicious bowl of Asian goodness? Yeah? Great, here goes.
One bite of this sweet & spicy Asian brown rice and pineapple bowl and my self-control left me. It said, “ciao Bella,” you’re on your own. And guess what happened when it left the building? I ate the entire bowl of this delectable dish of veggies, pineapple, and coconut soy sauce.
I ate two.
And before you start giving me judgy eyes, take a bite of this, because that’s all it’s going to take before you find yourself sitting on your couch watching HGTV as you lick the last remaining drops of sauce from the bottom of your bowl.
Judgy eyes be gone! Besides, I’m training for a marathon.
That’s going to be my excuse for the next eight months.
Now on to this sweet & spicy Asian brown rice and pineapple bowl.
Bowls are the B.O.M.B. right now. And why not? What could be better than piling a healthy carb and a ton of vegetables, plus a yummy sauce, in a big bowl that you get to mix up and eat? It doesn’t get much better than that.
This bowl was inspired by the fact that the Chinese New Year is coming up on Monday, February 8. It’s the Year of the Monkey. Alex is a monkey. She thought she was a rat for some reason and has been harboring bad will toward her brother because he’s a dog. She loves dogs and wanted to be a dog too. Then she discovered that she was wrong, and now she’s thrilled because she’s a monkey. I’m a rabbit. But I digress.
You can’t celebrate the Chinese New Year without eating something Chinese. That would be wrong. Thankfully I’ve created this crazy good brown rice and pineapple bowl that you can make in less than thirty minutes and be as happy as a monkey.
Because I wanted to use some pineapple juice to marinate the tofu, and to use in the coconut milk sauce that you’re going to pour all over the top of this dish, I decided to use Dole Pineapple chunks. Pineapple is a great source of vitamin C and manganese and aids in digestion.
You’ll want to start this recipe by pressing the extra moisture out of the tofu and then marinate it in a pineapple orange juice mix for twenty five minutes while you prepare the rest of the meal.
To Press tofu: Put your tofu on a plate lined with paper towels and then put another layer of paper towel on top and set a heavy pan on the top. Let sit for twenty to thirty minutes. Change the towels after ten minutes.
Marinate your tofu while you prepare the rest of the dish. Cut it in half lengthwise. This helps it soak up the juice and cook faster.
While the tofu is marinating make four servings of Minute Rice Brown Rice. I like brown rice because it has more nutrients than white rice and Minute cooks in just ten minutes. Perfect for a busy weeknight. I also love the nutty flavor and chewy texture.
Minute Brown Rice
While the rice is cooking, heat a wok or a large skillet and when it’s hot add 1 tablespoon of Kikkoman Teriyaki Sauce to the pan. Teriyaki sauce adds so much flavor and is a great way to saute vegetables without using oil. Add the pineapple and toss it around until it starts to turn a light golden brown. Remove it from the pan and put it in a bowl for later.
You’re going to continue the process with the broccoli, bell pepper, and bok choy. Add some teriyaki sauce and the broccoli. Add some teriyaki sauce and the pepper, and so on.
While the vegetables are cooking you can heat a small sauce pan and add 1 teaspoon of teriyaki sauce and the garlic. Cook the garlic for a minute and then add a can of light coconut milk, some soy sauce, a few tablespoons of the pineapple orange juice that you marinated the tofu in, sriracha, and Chinese 5 spice. Bring it to a boil and simmer while you finish cooking the vegetables and the tofu.
The tofu is the last ingredient that you’ll want to cook. The wok or skillet that you used to cook the Dole pineapple and vegetables will be nice and hot and will give a nice sear to the tofu. Add a tablespoon of teriyaki sauce and the tofu and cook until both sides are nice and golden brown.
Now it’s time to build your sweet & spicy Asian brown rice and pineapple bowl. And let me say that this is NOT a stir-fry. Ain't nothing fried in oil in this dish! Now that we have that straight....
Fill half of the bowl with rice, then add some pineapple, some teriyaki glazed broccoli, yellow bell pepper, and bok choy. Now pour on a liberal amount of the amazingly flavorful spicy coconut soy sauce—I could drink this sauce— which has 37% less sodium than regular soy sauce. Sprinkle some fresh chopped green onion on top and dinner is served.
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Sweet & Spicy Asian Brown Rice and Pineapple Bowl
- 5 tablespoons of teriyaki sauce
- 1 15 ounce block of tofu – pressed to remove excess water and cut in half lengthwise
- 4 cups of cooked brown rice – follow directions on package
- 1 20 ounce can of pineapple chunks packed in pineapple juice – reserve the juice for a marinade
- 1 small head of broccoli – remove stem and break into florets
- 1 head of bok choy – coarsely chopped
- 1 yellow bell pepper – seeded and coarsely chopped
- 1 or 2 green onions – chopped
For the sauce:
- Juice from 1 orange – approximately 1/4 cup
- 1 teaspoon of teriyaki sauce
- 1 clove of garlic – minced
- 1 13 ounce can of light coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon of sriracha – NOTE: Start with a teaspoon and add and taste as you go if you don’t like spicy food.
- 2 tablespoons of reduced sodium soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons of Chinese 5 Spice
- 3 tablespoons of pineapple orange juice
- Make the rice according to the directions on the package.
- NOTE: Reserve 3 tablespoons in a small bowl for the sauce. Pour the pineapple juice from the can of pineapple chunks into a shallow bowl. Add the orange juice and whisk with a fork. Place the tofu in the marinade and turn a few times. Let sit for 10 minutes and turn the tofu. Let sit until ready to cook.
- Heat a wok or a large iron skillet with 1 tablespoon of teriyaki sauce. When the sauce it hot and bubbling add the pineapple and toss in the sauce to coat. Stirring frequently, cook the pineapple until the surface begins to lightly brown and caramelize. Approximately 4-5 minutes. Remove from pan and let sit in a bowl.
- Add 3 tablespoons of teriyaki sauce to the wok or skillet and cook the broccoli until the stems are easily pierced with a fork. Stirring occasionally. It should be soft but not mushy. Still slightly firm. Remove from the pan and put in a bowl with the pineapple. Approximately 6-8 minutes.
- While the broccoli is cooking, make the sauce. Heat a small saucepan on medium heat. When the pan is hot add the teaspoon of teriyaki sauce and the garlic. Stir and cook for two minutes. Add the coconut milk, sriracha, soy sauce, Chinese 5 spice, and pineapple and orange juice. Stir well to combine and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until the tofu is ready.
- Add 1/4 cup of water to the wok or skillet (it should sizzle and steam). Add the bell pepper and stir to combine the teriyaki water glaze. Cook for four minutes and add the bok choy. Stir to coat with the glaze. Cook until the peppers and bok choy begin to soften. Approximately 6-8 minutes. Remove from the pan and put in the bowl with the pineapple and broccoli.
- Add 1 tablespoon of teriyaki sauce to the wok or skillet and spread evenly. Add the tofu steaks (if you’re cooking with a wok you might want to cube the tofu) and sear on both sides. Approximately two minutes per side. They should be golden brown.
- Fill a bowl with rice, the vegetables, pineapple, and the green onion. Pour the sauce on top and toss.