I’ve gone a bit Vietnamese food crazy lately, with pad thai, rice paper rolls and the like making regular appearances in my kitchen. This tofu vermicelli bowl has also been a part of the mix and I’ve been loving the mix of fresh, crispy vegetables, lightly fried tofu and lots of herbs and chilli.
The other day I was perusing the aisles of the health food store near my work (please tell me I’m not the only one who does that!) when I spotted some black rice on sale and decided it needed to come home with me. I had seen a few recipes using black rice but had never eaten it myself, so after doing some research decided the first way I wanted to try it was in a salad. I picked the brightest coloured vegetables from my veggie delivery, and away I went!
I’ve discovered a strange quirk with my veggie boxes lately in that if I haven’t used up one particular vegetable it always shows up in large quantities in the next box as well, leaving me with a huge pile of something that needs to be used up quickly. It happens occasionally with tomatoes, but luckily they are easy to cook up in a big batch to make tomato sauce, which can be frozen to be used later. That’s what I did with this batch, and the best part is the sauce is really versatile. I like to keep it chunky for simple pastas and blend it up nice and smooth for pizza bases. I like mine with a good kick to it so use a whole chilli, seeds and all, but you can reduce the spice to your own taste.
I went through a phase a while ago when I was using Israeli (or pearl as it’s also known) couscous all the time, then all of a sudden I just stopped buying it for no particular reason. Over the last few weeks I have seen a lot of recipes pop up on blogs I follow, so decided it was about time I restocked the cupboard and reignited my love for Israeli couscous. If you haven’t used it before it’s a much larger grain than standard couscous and puffs up in size when cooked, but it’s just as quick and easy to prepare as standard couscous. I just find it tastier!
This recipe was inspired by the recipe Erica from Addicted to Handmade shared on her blog a little while back. I didn’t have the same ingredients that she did, but it was a great launching off point for a delicious soup! I’m loving finally owning a food processor as up until this point my soup making has been limited to chunky minestrone soups, and while I still will be making large batches of that over the winter as it’s always been a favourite, I can’t wait to try out all kinds of other flavour combinations as well!