1 (14 ounce) package firm tofu
2 teaspoons umeboshi vinegar
¼ cup lemon juice (1 lemon)
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups apples, chopped into bite size pieces
2 cups celery, chopped into bite size pieces
1 cup walnuts, roasted and chopped coarsely
½ cup raisins, boiled for 5 minutes and drained
2 pinches sea salt
dash of umeboshi vinegar
- To make dressing, boil tofu for 10 minutes, drain using strainer and set aside to cool. This process will pull excess water from the tofu.
- In food processor, place tofu, umeboshi vinegar, and lemon juice. Process until smooth. Add olive oil while spinning.
- In mixing bowl, toss apples, celery, walnuts, raisins, sea salt, and umeboshi vinegar.
- Add dressing to taste and mix until well combined.
Chef’s note: Leftover dressing can be utilized as a dipping sauce for vegetable sticks, or as a spread on toast. Keeps in refrigerator for 3 – 4 days.
Sweet Potato Salad with Aioli Sauce
1 medium Japanese sweet potato (or sweet potato of your choice), diced into bite sized pieces
1 medium purple sweet potato (or sweet potato of your choice), diced into bite sized pieces
1 small red onion, finely diced (½ cup)
2 teaspoons umeboshi vinegar
½ medium fennel bulb or 2 stems celery, sliced thin (1 cup)
a few pinches sea salt
½ cup Aioli (recipe below) or store bought, plant-based aioli
Black pepper to taste
Chopped parsley or Asian mustard flowers for garnish
Tofu Sour Cream:
(Makes about 2 cups)
1 package (14 ounces) tofu, steamed for 10 minutes
4 tablespoons lemon juice (1 lemon)
1 tablespoon umeboshi vinegar
1 tablespoon brown rice syrup
1 tablespoon safflower oil
(Makes about 1 ¼ cups)
1 cup Tofu Sour Cream
2 cloves garlic, not peeled
1 tablespoon mustard
1 tablespoon rice syrup
⅛ teaspoon sea salt or to taste
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- Steam sweet potatoes (each one separately) until tender, about 10 minutes each and set aside to cool.
- In the meantime, in small bowl, marinate red onion with umeboshi vinegar for 15 minutes.
- In another small bowl, massage fennel with a few pinches of sea salt and set aside for 10 minutes. Squeeze out the water. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine sweet potatoes, red onion, fennel, Aioli and black pepper. Mix gently. Serve with garnish.
Chef’s tip: You can make this dish 1-3 hours ahead of time since the flavor settles after sitting for a while. Store in the refrigerator.
Tofu Sour Cream:
- Combine all the ingredients except olive oil in food processor. Process until smooth. With processor running, slowly add oil until incorporated.
Chef’s note: sour cream keeps well in the fridge for 3 – 4 days.
- In small skillet over medium heat, toast garlic for about five minutes, until brown spots appear on skin, shaking the skillet occasionally. Set aside. When it cools enough to handle, peel the skin.
- Combine all ingredients except olive oil in food processor. Process until smooth. With processor running, slowly add oil until incorporated.
Chef’s note: keeps well in the fridge for 3 – 4 days.
Spring Sautéed Broccoli Rabe with Mushrooms
1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, sliced into thin half moons
1 clove garlic, minced
Few pinches of sea salt, or to taste
½ cup thinly sliced mushrooms
1 bunch broccoli rabe, chopped into 1 inch lengths, stems and leaves divided (about 3 cups total)
2 teaspoons tamari
1 tablespoon lemon juice (½ lemon)
Zest of one lemon for garnish
- In a skillet, heat oil over medium flame. Sauté onion and garlic with a few pinches of sea salt until onion becomes translucent.
- Add mushrooms and continue sautéing for a couple of minutes until mushrooms are fully cooked.
- Layer broccoli rabe, first stems, then leaves on top, with a little water added to the vegetables. Cover the skillet and steam for 1 minute until broccoli rabe turns bright green.
- In a meantime, combine shoyu and lemon juice in small bowl.
- Remove cover of skillet, add the seasoning mixture, stir to incorporate well. Taste, adjusting flavor if necessary.
- Serve immediately with a sprinkle of lemon zest on top for garnish.
2 inches strip kombu, soaked and cut into smaller squares
1 cup daikon, sliced in 1-inch thick rounds
½ cup carrots, sliced in chunks
1 cup winter squash
1 onion, cut into 6 large pieces
- Place the kombu on the bottom of the pot and add approximately 1 inch water.
- Place the vegetables in sections in the pot.
- Add a pinch of salt, cover and bring to a boil.
- Reduce flame to low and simmer for 30-35 minutes or until the vegetables are soft and sweet.
- Add several drops of shoyu or tamari, cover and simmer for another 5 minutes until almost all of the remaining liquid has evaporated.
- Mix the vegetables so all the liquid and seasoning and remaining liquid is evenly dispersed.
Other delicious combinations:
Winter squash, Japanese sweet potato, daikon, carrot
Winter squash, parsnips, cabbage, onion
Sautéed Dandelions with Leeks
1 bunch dandelion greens, chopped in 2 inch pieces*
¼ of a large or ½ of a small red onion, sliced in thin half moons
1 cup thinly sliced leeks
Sesame or olive oil
2 T sauerkraut
- Heat 1 T oil in a skillet on medium-high heat.
- Add red onions, a pinch of sea salt and sauté onions until soft, approximately 2 minutes.
- Add leek, sauté 1 minute.
- Add dandelions and sauté until wilted, approximately 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the sauerkraut.
* To chop the dandelion greens, first cut off the end of the stems, then cut up from the stems in 2 inch increments.
2 cups cauliflower florets
3 leaves of kale, stems removed and torn into bite size pieces
1 cup fresh or frozen corn
1 cup pea pods, ends trimmed and center vein removed
Pinch of sea salt
- Place 2-3 cups water in a deep pot with a pinch of sea salt.
- Cover and bring to a boil.
- Add corn and boil until bright yellow, approximately 2 minutes. Remove and let cool.
- Add cauliflower and boil until tender, but slightly crunchy, approximately 2-3 minutes. Remove and let cool.
- Add pea pods and cook for 15-30 seconds until bright green. Remove and let cool.
- Add kale and cook for 1 ½ – 2 minutes. Remove and let cool.
- Mix ingredients together and serve.
It’s best to let the water to come a rolling boil between each vegetable. You can make many vegetables this way including broccoli, carrots, daikon, onions, leeks, collard greens, mustard greens and celery.