Unwittingly, you've stumbled onto a one-size-fits-all holiday meal: It's suitably colorful enough for the night before Christmas Eve, with red onion (okay, purplish) and green broccoli. It's stir-fried in a small amount of oil, a nod to Hanukkah just past. And it's quick enough not to interfere with last-minute shopping.
Start by making the instant brown rice, and it will be ready for plating once the stir-fry is done.
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 2 cups instant brown rice, preferably Minute brand
- 1-inch piece ginger root
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon low-sodium tamari (may substitute low-sodium soy sauce)
- 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- 3/4 pound broccoli
- 1 medium red onion
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more as needed
- 1/3 cup sliced skin-on almonds
- 1 tablespoon store-bought green curry paste or curry powder, or to taste
- Leaves from 4 or 5 stems cilantro
Heat the water in a medium saucepan over high heat. When it comes to a boil, add the rice and stir to combine. Once it returns to a boil, cover and remove from the heat.
Peel and grate the ginger root; place in a medium bowl along with the rice vinegar, tamari and sesame oil. Stir to combine.
Cut the broccoli into bite-size florets to yield 2 cups. If desired, cut some of the tender stalks into thin strips and add to the florets.
Cut the onion in half, then into very thin half-moon slices to yield about 1 1/2 cups.
Heat the olive oil in a wok or medium saute pan over medium-high heat until the oil shimmers.
Add the almonds and toast for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring constantly, until they are very lightly browned.
Add the green curry paste or curry powder and stir to combine. When it is fragrant, add the onion and stir-fry for 2 to 3 minutes, until softened.
Add the broccoli and stir-fry for 2 minutes; it should still be barely crisp. Taste, and add curry paste or powder as needed. If the mixture seems dry, add a teaspoon or two of olive oil.
Add the tamari-ginger mixture and stir to coat evenly; cook until heated through and just bubbling. Remove from the heat.
Coarsely chop the cilantro leaves and add to the stir-fry, tossing lightly to combine. Remove from the heat.
Uncover the rice; divide it among individual shallow bowls, then top with the stir-fry mixture. Serve immediately.
Adapted from "The Vegan Cook's Bible," by Pat Crocker (Robert Rose, 2009).
Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.
E-mail questions to the Food Section at firstname.lastname@example.org.