I am a sort of fat kid who sort of eats Paleo style. When I’m not melting cheese on everything and counting the ripples of fat in my stomach, I generally eat pretty healthy – minimal dairy and wheat, maximum fruits, veggies and MEAT. I realize this doesn’t make me the prime candidate for the vegan cookbook I just picked up, but the recipes and creativity found in The Lusty Vegan have continued to open my mind to the worlds of soy, tofu and dishes like this amazing Korean bibimbap.
The book is a cookbook and relationship manifesto written by Ayinde Howell and Zoe Eisenberg. Zoe runs the blog Sexy Tofu – you might recall our adventures together cooking vegan cuisine while I forced her to watch a three hour Meryl Streep movie. (She was a co-pilot in the early stages of my Epic Film Quest. We also watched this mustached wonder sing and dance.)
Anyways, Zoe and Ayinde also work together on the website I Eat Grass, so blending her blog’s dating and relationship advice with his mad cooking skills (he’s an executive chef in LA), The Lusty Vegan is a great read for any meat eater learning to love a vegan or vice versa. The recipes are all top notch and with an open mind, you may just learn a thing or two or discover a new style of cooking that you can dip your toe in from time to time.
Me? I’m an equal opportunity eater. Vegan, Paleo, meat, veggies, fat kid style – I love to eat. Zoe came over a couple weeks ago after the book dropped (Do books drop like albums? Can I get all Kanye with this?), and we made this delicious Korean dish called bibimbap. This dish of Asian excellency is served as a bowl of warm white rice topped with sautéed and seasoned vegetables, gochujang (chili pepper paste), soy sauce, bean sprouts and more. The hot dish is stirred together thoroughly just before eating. A raw or fried egg and sliced meat (usually beef) are also common additions. If I make the dish again, I might add in some yummy meats, but the recipe as it stands in The Lusty Vegan is phenomenal and you should open up your meat craving mind and try it out as is. You won’t regret it!
Straight from the book, here’s Ayinde’s vegan bibimbap recipes.
What you need:
1/4 cup toasted sesame oil
2 tablespoons low-sodium wheat-free tamari
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3/4 tablespoon gochujang hot chili paste (Whole Foods had tons of chili paste options!)
2 teaspoons rice vinegar
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons grapeseed or safflower oil
8 ounces of tofu, cut into four equal slices
2 cups sliced shiitake or button mushrooms
2 cups cooked basmati rice
2 cups baby spinach
1 cup shredded carrots
1 cup bean sprouts
1 cup sliced red onion
Toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
1. In a small bowl, combine the sesame oil, tamari, sugar, chili paste, vinegar and garlic. Mix well. Set aside.
2. Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the tofu and cook until browned on both sides, about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms. Add half of the reserved sauce mixture. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and cook for 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat.
3. Divide the cooked rice between two bowls. Evenly divide the spinach, carrots, bean sprouts and onion between the bowls, scattering them on top of the rice. (The veggies should remain raw, but we cooked them for a minute or so. Just a smidge. Do what you want to, but they should be crunchy.)
4. Top with the tofu. Sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds and drizzle the remaining sauce on top.
IT TASTES LIKE WONDERFULNESS. You want this so hard and just don’t know it yet.
For more recipes like this, pick up a copy of the book here and get your tofu on.
From The Lusty Vegan © 2014 by Ayinde Howell and Zoe Eisenberg. Used with permission from Vegan Heritage Press.