Bowls of Plenty
Recipes for Healthy and Delicious Whole-Grain Meals
A cookbook review by Linda Kissam & Adrianne Morrison
If you’re seeking a lovey new cookbook for gifting and/or encouraging healthy eating, give Bowls of Plenty ($28) . This is a tabletop quality cookbook with a beautiful message promoting healthy eating and the dignity of grains. Every recipe includes a personal note from the author, Carolynn Carreño, James Beard award-winning food writer.
The appeal of “bowling” (as the author calls this way of eating) is the premise that homemade meals that fit in a bowl can be more healthy, nutritious and interesting when utilizing a variety of grains. How many grains are there to choose from? Twenty-one—that’s right, 21—and each is described with a bit of history and cooking instructions. The grains chapter alone makes this book a valuable addition to your cooking repertoire. Combined with the suggestions of what to serve with these grains, it becomes quite a unique cookbook.
The recipes are thoughtfully organized: Breakfast, Salads, Asian, Middle Eastern, Mexican and Dessert with guidance for shopping ingredients and recommended “equipment, tools and gadgets” to make preparation foolproof.
We loved the book. Five out of five stars!
There are many healthy reasons to include more whole grains in our meals instead of the white flour and rice found in most American diets. In just a few generations we have found these processed products have caused us physical illness woes and weight gain. Whole grains, however, have been used for thousands of years and can improve digestion, contribute to reduced cholesterol and blood pressure, and reduce the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke and cancer. Plus, they are tasty, have interesting texture, and frankly fun to cook.
After all, aren’t we tired of the typical fast food Teriyaki or Burrito bowls anyway? No? The family likes them, they’re easy to take to work, and we know what they taste like. Well, what if you could make better bowls? To get started, introduce yourself to new grains for breakfast. I tried the Four Grain ”Nutella” Porridge because who doesn’t love hazelnuts, chocolate and raspberry jam. I did have to visit Whole Foods Market to find the grains: millet, quinoa, amaranth and teff so that was a fun adventure in itself.
On the opposite page of the porridge is a recipe for Homemade Nut Milk. Try it. While at Whole Foods pick up a “nut milk bag” for straining and squeezing the milk from the ground nuts. And, don’t forget the raw almonds, hazelnuts and cashews, some vanilla beans and agave syrup for sweetness. It’s more work than grabbing that Almond milk from the refrigerator section, but I promise you, it’s not only good, it’s fun to make. I am often amazed we can make something instead of getting it out of a package at the store. (I know, my city-girl is showing.) If you have kids, help them make their breakfast milk. Make it the night before as a project—they’ll love it and you’ll know it’s fresh and healthy with no preservatives or sugar.
Oh, and while at Whole Foods pick up the ingredients for the Sunday Night Detox Bowl with Roasted Broccoli and Ponzu (recipe below) which is brown rice and broccoli fancied up with Asian seasonings, avocado and a special sauce you will make. Sounds like the perfect way to end and/or start a new week especially if we’ve overindulged during the weekend.
Food bowls have become unbelievably popular lately – from smoothie bowls to taco bowls, they have become a huge trend in the culinary world. Within this book is the delicious cure for food hangovers, guilt ridden fast food choices and bloating caused by buttery and fried foods. Turn over a new leaf by filling your bowl with good stuff like vegetables, whole grains, and small amounts of animal protein It’s a big plus for me that many of the dishes have a decidedly San Diego, CA style flavoring to them – love me some Asia and Mexican influenced dishes. Just sayin’…
The book is packed with gorgeous photos (so you know what success looks like) and 100 creative bowl recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. If you can’t find something to love, you just aren’t trying,
Here are just a few of the mouthwatering options:
Burnt Vegetable Bowl with Black Rice and Lentils and Tahini Sauce
Quinoa and Poached Salmon Salad with Confetti Vegetables
Huervos Rancheros Bowl
Korean Short Ribs
Flourless Chocolate Teff Cake
Discover what this book has to over by making this easy recipe.
SUNDAY NIGHT DETOX BOWL
with Roasted Broccoli and Ponzu
Authors Note: I do not have the digestive system to be a food writer. All the multi course dinners, the food events, the recipe testing, the tasting. I know, not exactly a sob story. Still—in the words of a long-lost friend from Rome—eating this way makes my liver hurt. This bowl is what I eat when my liver hurts: a big bowl of brown rice piled with broccoli. Adding ponzu sauce and maybe, maybe, an avocado is as decadent as I want to go. The morning after eating this bowl I wake up and I can hear the faint sound of my renewed organ whispering, “Grazie, Carolina. Grazie!” Togarashi is a Japanese spice blend. You can use furikake (another Japanese seasoning, made of seaweed) or toasted sesame seeds instead. All of these can be found in the Asian section of upscale grocery stores, or in Asian grocery stores. Serves 4
1½ to 2 pounds broccoli (about 1 large head)
2 tablespoons canola oil (or another neutral-flavored oil)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Ginger Scallion Rice or 1 cup long-grain brown rice, cooked (about 3½ cups cooked rice)
2 ripe avocados, halved, pitted, and peeled
1 lemon, quartered
Ponzu Sauce (recipe follows)
Broccoli flowers (optional)
Togarashi (or furikake or toasted black or white sesame seeds)
Adjust the oven racks so none are near the oven floor; you will put the baking sheet on the oven floor. (If you have an oven that doesn’t allow you to put a baking sheet on the floor, put one rack as close to it as possible.) Preheat the oven to 500°F.
Cut off and discard the tough stems of the broccoli and cut the broccoli into big tree-like segments. Put the trees on a baking sheet, toss with the oil and salt, and arrange them cut-side down in a single layer. Put the baking sheet on the oven floor or lowest rack and roast the broccoli for 10 to 12 minutes, until deep brown on both sides, turning the trees with tongs midway through the cooking time. Remove the broccoli from the oven. (Alternatively, if you really want to make your liver happy, steam the broccoli until it is bright green and tender when pierced with a fork.)
Spoon the rice into four bowls. Put one avocado pitted-side up on each bowl. Nestle the broccoli and lemon wedges next to the avocado halves and drizzle the ponzu into the hole left by the avocado pits and over the broccoli and sprinkle with the broccoli flowers, if using. The broccoli flowers are just for looks—and absolutely optional. Sprinkle togarashi over the bowls and serve the rest of the ponzu sauce on the side.
Ponzu sauce is a great “bomb shelter condiment.” It takes about 2 minutes to make, out of ingredients you’re very likely to have on hand. This sauce, a boiled egg, and a bowl of steamed brown rice and I’m happy. Makes about 1¼ cups
¼ cup fresh lime juice
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
½ cup low-sodium soy sauce or tamari
2 tablespoons mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine; substitute dry sherry)
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
Stir all the ingredients together in a small bowl or glass measuring cup, or give them a shake in a clean jam jar with a lid. The sauce will keep, refrigerated, for up to a week.
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Coconut Millet Porridge – Beatriz da Costa
Sunday Night Detox Bowl -Beatriz da Costa