A couple of weekends ago I went on my first yoga retreat. I've been practicing yoga for nine, going on 10, years now, so it seemed like time to take my practice to the next level. It was a phenomenal experience. I loved the many classes and meditation sessions, and "sistering" with my fellow retreaters did something incredible for my soul and took me back to my days of Phi Beta Chi retreats. It was truly transformative. Here's a picture of our studio. Isn't it peaceful?
But another aspect to the retreat that I hadn't planned on was how good my body felt after a weekend of vegan and gluten-free food.
I was a little nervous about this at first. Not that I eat too much meat anyway, but an entire weekend of vegan food was more than I'd ever had before. But this was good food. Coconut fried rice with edamame, gluten-free sage scones, and spring rolls with peanut sauce to die for, among many other things. And my body loved it. I felt so good and strong and energized.
So it got me thinking. Being vegan full-time will never work. Occasionally, I do want a steak and fries (um, helloooooo, we're going to France next month). But every now and then, I think a gluten-free vegan meal would be a good idea. Pinterest to the rescue. I found this recipe, and thought it might be a good way to ease the (ever-patient) hubby into vegan fare.
And it turned out amazing. The sauce had a lot of heat, but then again, we're always generous with the red pepper flakes. The ginger gave it a bright, fresh flavor, and you absolutely could not tell that the noodles you were eating were brown rice noodles and not regular pasta.
We decided we could use the sauce for a lot of things, from sauteing bok choy by itself to fried rice to regular stir-fry. It was extremely well-balanced, with the perfect amount of heat. All in all, a win. Stay tuned to see what vegan and gluten-free creations I torment my husband with next...
sesame-ginger noodles with bok choy
brown rice noodles (we used Trader Joe's brown rice angel hair pasta)
3 cups baby bok choy
thinly sliced green onion
black sesame seeds to top (optional)
2 garlic cloves
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced
2 tablespoons soy sauce (technically, we didn't use gluten-free soy sauce)
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (pretty sure B used more than that)
Cook pasta according to package directions - do not overcook!
While pasta is boiling, wash bok choy and chop into quarters. Set aside.
Mix sauce ingredients in a small bowl.
In a saucepan on medium heat, add sauce and cook 1-2 minutes.
Add in bok choy, mixing well, until slightly softened.
Reduce heat to low and add rice noodles, cooking until everything is warm and combined.
Top with green onions and sesame seeds.
The nutrition depends on how many noodles you use. We used three servings of Trader Joe's brown rice angel hair pasta, and it made four servings, each at about 220 servings. To make it truly gluten-free, use gluten-free soy sauce.
Recipe from ChoosingChia.com.