Asian Glass Noodles with Tofu & Wild Greens

Introversion - along with its cousins sensitivity, seriousness, and shyness - is now a second-class personality trait, somewhere between a disappointment and a pathology.
— Susain Cain from her book, "Quiet - The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking"

Have you read the book above? It's really a very interesting exploration into introversion. As a profound introvert myself, I am learning quite a bit. It'd be impressive what an extrovert could learn from reading the book! Take my word for it and get it. Tell me what you think. Acquiring a more complete understanding of the ones you love and just everyday people in general (especially the wallflowers that often can be difficult to get to know and understand) is always a good thing. In fact, I recommended the book to my supervisor at work!

However, I haven't had much time to read lately. Nor cook, sleep, snuggle, or just in general kick back. I seem to need an uncustomary amount of the stuff. You know, just be alone. I'll decidedly lose my shit if I don't get to be by myself for just a little while within the next few days. It's been a full month of non-stopness (it's a word) and it's got to stop. Someone please put me in solitary confinement, or at least a timeout. Take me to my doctor's office so I can sit alone for two hours in that cold, tiny room while waiting for her to come in, you know what I'm talking about. Anything! I'll do anything! My battery is almost dead!

When life swings into full gear with intense social activities, triple-threat car problems, serious work changes, jury duty, and just general life quandaries...I tend to retreat into my shell of calm. Irish exits (minus any drunk insinuations) become my norm and in an effort to quiet my life, I quiet myself instead, and become almost mute. This can be misinterpreted as "grumpy" and/or "moody", so I do try to rein it in a bit. I couldn't actually be mute in real life. That probably wouldn't go over very well. Does anyone else have these problems?

Yesterday was the beautiful rehearsal dinner for my best friend's wedding. Todd and I had to eat before we dashed over there #lifeasavegan, so while he was commuting home I whipped up this scrumptious glass noodle dish and took advantage of some chickweed before the frost comes!

Produce On Parade - Asian Glass Noodles with Tofu & Wild Greens
Produce On Parade - Asian Glass Noodles with Tofu & Wild Greens
Produce On Parade - Asian Glass Noodles with Tofu & Wild Greens

That, my friends, is chickweed. Which I adore with all my little heart. The flavor is devilishly earthy and green, and eating it makes me feel like a real wild woman!

Produce On Parade - Asian Glass Noodles with Tofu & Wild Greens
Produce On Parade - Asian Glass Noodles with Tofu & Wild Greens
Produce On Parade - Asian Glass Noodles with Tofu & Wild Greens
Produce On Parade - Asian Glass Noodles with Tofu & Wild Greens
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Asian Glass Noodles with Tofu & Wild Greens
This quick asian dish is infused with ginger, garlic, lime, and sweet chili. Studded with browned tofu, kale and wild greens are strewn throughout the chewy, flavorful glass noodles.
  • 6 oz. dry glass noodles (mung bean thread noodles)
  • 1 Tbsp. sesame oil
  • 10 oz. extra firm tofu, pressed and diced
  • 2 Tbsp. hoisin sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. sweet chili sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. agave nectar
  • 1 Tbsp. minced ginger
  • 1 lime, juiced (scant ¼ cup)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • Dash of crushed red pepper
  • ½ bunch of kale, de-stemmed and torn
  • 1 large handful of wild greens, washed well and chopped (chickpea, arugula, purslane, lamb’s quarters, spinach, etc.)
  • 2 splashes of soy sauce
  • sprinkling of sesame seeds, for garnish
Bring about 6 cups of water to boil for the glass noodles. Place the dried noodles in a large bowl and cover with the boiling water. Allow to rest about 10 minutes, then drain the noodles and set aside.Meanwhile, heat the sesame oil over medium in a large frying pan. Add the diced tofu and sauté about 8 minutes, until browned.In a small bowl, whisk together the hoisin sauce through and including the crushed red pepper. Set aside.Now, add the torn kale to the tofu. Throw in a splash of soy sauce and cover. Cook for about 3 minutes, until the kale has wilted. Transfer the kale and tofu mixture to a large serving dish.Add the wild greens to the now empty frying pan along with a splash of soy sauce and sauté for one to two minutes, until wilted. Add to the tofu mixture.Pour the sauce into the frying pan and bring to a slight boil, then remove from heat.Mix the glass noodles into the tofu and greens mixture along with the sauce. Toss with tongs to combine.Serve hot with a sprinkling of sesame seeds.
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 6
Produce On Parade - Asian Glass Noodles with Tofu & Wild Greens
Produce On Parade - Asian Glass Noodles with Tofu & Wild Greens
Produce On Parade - Asian Glass Noodles with Tofu & Wild Greens

German Word of The Day

Overwhelmed --> überfordert (uber-four-dort)

Good Deed of The Day

Read this article on 30 Things You To Stop Doing To Yourself from Lifebuzz. 

Glass Noodle Primavera

Spring won't emerge here in Alaska for quite some time. However, the fact that we have no snow to speak of, longer days, and the warmth from the the sun intensifying has forced me to think about it. Springtime. It'll be a tad bittersweet for Todd and I. There's so much to look forward to this summer. I'll be a bridesmaid in two weddings. Two very important weddings, and I couldn't be more excited to spend those specials days with my very best of friends. I can't wait to run outside in the sun again with Todd now that he's doing better because of our lifestyle change veganism, with regards to his arthritis. I'm looking forward to doing more backpacking this summer, and I can't wait to forage in the springtime. My brandnew foraging and gathering books have been collecting dust since the fall. Also, super exciting, our veganiversary and Produce On Parade's one year birthday are in April! Oh, and my birthday too, let's not forget.

However, it'll also be a bit of a downer. We'd hoped to definitely be building this spring, but it looks like we'll have to wait another entire year. It wouldn't be such a horrible thing, but we happen to be living in the teensiest, tiniest house that is literally crumbling. I'm not kidding. The stone tiles are breaking and the grout is crumbling away only to get stuck in our cordless POS vacuum or eaten by Bob. The roof was completely replaced last fall, but our wind storm in January ripped a good chunk of it off and the landlord refuses to fix it until April. Happy Birthday me? "Text me if it starts leaking." Seriously, that was her instruction. I'm not making this up. The porch is rotting wood that's no longer nailed together and bounces up and down and when stepped on. It was supposed to be replaced into a concert porch last summer...yea, that didn't happen. All this, among many other things.

Regrettably and most importantly, it also postpones our family planning. At this rate we'll be 40 before we have our first child! So, there's my sad story. I hope it made you feel better about your situation. Just teasing. I know we're lucky to live in Alaska, let alone with a roof over our head! Truely. I've slept in my car more than a few times. Apparently it's frowned upon to sleep in your car with a 90 lb. dog during winter at the University of Alaska, Anchorage. Just sayin'. Don't park at the art building, the cops will find you. Who knew? Parks are also off limits. I recommend the grocery store parking lot.

Yet, one always has to see the silver lining. We'll be able to save up more for our down payment and not feel one bit rushed. We'll also have the opportunity to really fine tune our house plans and develop a good strategy plan. Besides, I know it will happen one day. 

How does this all tie into today's recipe? Spring! As promised in this post...more GLASS NOODLE! Glass Noodle Primavera to be specific. Primavera means spring in Spanish. 

Produce On Parade - Glass Noodle PrimaveraIf there's anything that could cheer me up food wise, besides chocolate let's be real, it'd be this bright and sunny glass noodle vegetable dish. It's a bit of a twist on pasta primavera. Still flourishing with crisp, fresh spring vegetables but glass noodles replace regular pasta and drenched instead in an Asian sesame sauce. 

You won't see my cherry tomatoes in the photographs because I am total space cadet and I completely forgot to add them at the end. Never fear, I stirred them in after I took all the photos. Go figure. Sometimes things just don't go as planned. 

Produce On Parade - Glass Noodle Primavera

Glass Noodle Primavera 

Serves 6

Notes: It's a good idea to do the prep work for the vegetables before starting. However, wait to chop the fresh herbs as they can darken if left chopped for an extended period of time. I like to cook the noodles last. They only need to sit in hot water for about 5 minutes. 

  • Sauce:
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 cup sesame oil
  • 2 Tbsp. vegan sugar
  • 3 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1/8 tsp. ground black pepper
  • Vegetables:
  • 2 cups fresh sugar snap peas, halved on the diagonal
  • 1 cup frozen shelled edamame
  • 1 cup frozen green peas
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1-2 Tbsp. sesame seeds
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves, chiffonaded 
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, chiffonaded 
  • 1 cup fresh cherry tomatoes, halved
  • fresh sprouts, for garnish (optional)
  • Noodles:
  • 9 oz. mung bean thread noodles, dry

First, bring a large pot of salted water to boil for blanching the vegetables.

Now make the sauce by whisking all the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl, dissolving the sugar. Set aside until ready to use. 

Produce On Parade - Glass Noodle Primavera

Once the water is boiling, add the sugar snap peas, edamame, and the green peas. Submerge for about 1 minute, then drain the vegetables and rinse them under very cold water until they're chilled. Alternatively, they could be plunged into an ice bath. Drain and set aside. 

Produce On Parade - Glass Noodle Primavera Produce On Parade - Glass Noodle PrimaveraBring about 4 cups of water to a boil in a tea kettle. Place the dried noodles in a large bowl and submerge in the boiling water for about 5 minutes. Drain and set aside until ready to use. 

Produce On Parade - Glass Noodle PrimaveraMeanwhile, in a large wok or frying pan, heat the olive oil over low. Add the sesame seeds and the garlic. Saute for about 3 minutes, until the garlic becomes fragrant. Add the cooked noodles and the sauce. Stir well to coat to noodles. Add the blanched vegetables, tomatoes, and the fresh herbs. Cook only until heated through. 

Produce On Parade - Glass Noodle Primavera Produce On Parade - Glass Noodle Primavera Produce On Parade - Glass Noodle PrimaveraServe warm with fresh sprouts on top. 

Produce On Parade - Glass Noodle Primavera

Listening to: My jam about six years ago, Duffy – Warwick Avenue.

German Word of The Day: Spring --> Frühling (pronounced: frooh-ling)

Good Deed of The Day: Ummm, all I have to say about this one is WTF? Sign this petition to remove humane officer that shot kittens in front of children. This happened in Ohio!

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Thai Glass Noodle Soup

Who knew that glass noodles were actually mung bean thread noodles?? 'Cus I didn't, and now that I do...I think I'll need professional help. I. LOVE. GLASS. NOODLES.

Produce On Parade - Thai Glass Noodle Soup

I never knew what glass noodles really were. I thought they were cellophane vermicelli noodles, which, are not available at any Alaskan store I've ever been to. And I was right, they are cellophane vermicelli noodles! But, I failed to realize that they're one in the same with mung bean thread noodles. I saw these bean thread noodles yesterday at the store and Googled them on the spot (it's how I roll) and the rest is sweet, sweet history. Expect many more glass noodle recipes in your've been warned.  

Produce On Parade - Thai Glass Noodle SoupA creamy, Thai influenced soup filled with stir-fry vegetables, cubed tofu and chewy glass noodles. I love how quick this soup comes together and there's very minimal chopping. It's a great quick and easy dinner for a weeknight!

Thai Glass Noodle Soup

Serves 6

Notes: The glass noodles will absorb a bit more liquid the longer they sit in the soup. Oftentimes the storebrand of Worcestershire sauce is vegan and I believe the Annie's brand has a vegan one as well. I really like Thai Kitchen brand of coconut milk. Before opening it, vigorously shake the can to mix it. 

  • Noodles:
  • 4 oz. glass or cellophane vermicelli noodles (mung bean thread noodles), dry
  • Broth:
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 thumb-sized knob of fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. vegan Worcestershire sauce (storebrand or Annie's can be vegan)
  • 1 tsp. turmeric
  • 1 tsp. brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp. Hoisin sauce
  • 1/4 tsp. fresh chili paste
  • Conclusion:
  • 12 oz. frozen stir-fry vegetables (about 3 cups)
  • 1 15 oz. can full-fat coconut milk
  • 10 oz. extra firm tofu, cubed small
  • 1/2 lime, juiced
  • fresh cilantro, chopped (garnish) 

Bring a teapot full of water to a boil. Place the dry glass noodles in a large bowl. Cover with boiling water and allow to sit for about 6 minutes. Drain and set aside. 

Produce On Parade - Thai Glass Noodle Soup Produce On Parade - Thai Glass Noodle SoupIn a large soup pot, bring all the broth ingredients to a boil. Stir well. Reduce to low and add in the vegetables. Allow to cook for about 5 minutes. 

Produce On Parade - Thai Glass Noodle Soup Produce On Parade - Thai Glass Noodle SoupRemove from heat and add in the remaining conclusion ingredients except for the cilantro. Stir well and add in the cooked glass noodles. 

Produce On Parade - Thai Glass Noodle Soup

Serve hot and topped with fresh cilantro!

Produce On Parade - Thai Glass Noodle Soup Produce On Parade - Thai Glass Noodle SoupGood deed of the day: Please, please, pleeease sign this petition on! It seriously took me 5 seconds (yes, I counted) and you will be my hero, and also a hero for these poor little ducks. So please, just do it! Petition on - Stop Torturing Ducks for Foie Gras

German word of the day: Glass noodles --> Glasnudeln (pronounced: glassnoodlein) - yep, even the Germans have a word for these addictive noodles!

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