Six weeks as of today, April 24. Six weeks! I’m not sure what it adds up to exactly, but it’s a milestone nonetheless! On this rainy Friday, I’m pleased to wrap up the week’s content with a little help from Bean. (So meta!) Yesterday I ran in a state park, talked to my college friend on the old-fashioned telephone, video’d my daughter juggling a soccer ball to the exact beat of a Kanye song, made a batch of pesto with the last scraps of a bunch of basil (stretched out with kale, but don’t tell Abby), and watched three Fauda episodes in a row. (We’ve been trying to ration ourselves so the season lasts longer. Have I mentioned how much I love it??) I also, of course, spent a lot of time reading yesterday’s comments about what is bringing you joy and comfort. They were so sweet and life-affirming in their simplicity — Zoom bedtime stories and chess games with grandparents, watching your children play together, Top Chef competitions between mom and dad, bonding with old pets, keeping dinner diaries, morning walks with coffee, nursing new mothers in the maternity ward. (Thank you nurses!) Thank you for sharing your stories. They really helped me — I hope they helped you, too. Have a great weekend everyone. Here is your Friday PPP…
Pantry: Egg Roll in a Bowl
One reader on this blog (hi Karen!) and one on Cup of Jo mentioned their favorite thing to make with cabbage was “Egg Roll in a Bowl” and it was the kind of idea that I knew would stick in my brain until I had it for myself. I ended up making it for lunch, but obviously it would make a perfectly fine scrape-together dinner, especially when topped with a fried egg. I’m estimating the amounts here because I only made enough for me and my very lucky husband (is he not??) and haven’t retested for four. (Also: If anyone swears by a brand of the sweet-hot dipping sauce that typically comes alongside egg rolls, please enlighten! I plead complete ignorance on the subject.) Lastly, yes, I realize that the “egg” in egg roll doesn’t mean an actual egg — I just craved a protein hit.
2 tablespoons neutral oil (or olive oil if that’s what you’ve got), plus more for egg frying
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil (crucial)
1 1-inch piece ginger, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup yellow onion, chopped (or 1/3 cup chopped scallions)
red pepper flakes to taste
6-8 cups shredded cabbage (Napa or Savoy)
2 large carrots, shredded
3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
3 tablespoons soy sauce
chopped cilantro and chives for serving
Add both oils to a large skillet set over medium heat. Add ginger, garlic, onion, red pepper flakes and cook until everything is slightly softened. Add cabbage and carrots and cook down until cabbage is golden and sweet, about 6 to 8 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove everything to a large bowl and toss with rice wine vinegar and soy sauce. Tent with foil to keep warm and fry four eggs sunny-side up in the same skillet (adding more oil if necessary) on medium heat, until edges of whites are crispy and yolks are cooked through, about 5-6 minutes. Top each serving of cabbage with a fried egg and a sprinkling of herbs.
Pantry: My Favorite Kale Salad
Fun fact: I wrote a mini book of kale recipes two years ago that ended up getting sidelined for budget reasons. (This is why you might see a lot of kale in The Weekday Vegetarian.) Chapter 1, recipe 1 was this almond-and-cranberry kale salad, the one I always default to when faced with a big bunch of the curly variety.
1 large bunch kale, washed, stems removed, and finely chopped
2/3 cup raw almond slivers (toasted in a cast iron pan for 3 minutes over medium heat until roasty and brown)
1/2 cup dried cranberries
3 tablespoons minced red onion (or chopped scallions)
fresh herbs (preferably dill, chives, parsley)
simple vinaigrette (whisk together: 1 tablespoon Dijon, juice from a lemon, squeeze honey, salt & pepper, 1/3 cup olive oil)
Toss everything together, preferably 10 to 15 minutes before you want to eat your salad to let the dressing break down the kale a little.
Purpose: A Friday Poem
Angels, by Mary Oliver. “I have a lot of edges called Perhaps…and almost nothing you can call…Certainty.”
Stay safe, stay home.
The goal of the Project, Pantry, Purpose series to keep us sane, distracted, and connected. Please continue to comment below with suggestions for recipes, projects (for kids and adults), good deeds, donation ideas, stories, movies, games, puzzles. Or just tell me how you’re doing, what your daily routine is, and especially how DALS can help you or people in your community. You can also email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
And if you want to continue the contemplation of angels or poems or poems about angels, might I suggest: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/46701/questions-about-angels…. The egg roll in a bowl will be making it to my table this weekend. I found myself buying all the cabbage as any good grandchild of Eastern European immigrants would when hearing about an oncoming pandemic and now I don’t know what to do with it…
Mae Ploy is THE best sauce for egg rolls. I really love making egg roll in a bowl and a little drizzle of Mae Ploy really elevates it.
Thanks so much for all you do. We’ve had so many DALS dinners in these past few weeks and they’re something we look forward to. On sweet chili sauce, we typically shop for this at an Asian grocery and get the huge, almost wine bottle-sized of Mae Ploy brand that’s actually labeled Sweet Chili Sauce for Chicken. It’s the same stuff, and honestly it’s so thick and sweet from the bottle that we cut it with a little water before serving. That said, if the sauce looks pretty much the same in the bottle at the store, I don’t think there’s a huge brand difference, taste-wise.
We like Trader Joes Sweet Chili Sauce for dipping egg rolls and dumplings. I also use it along with ginger and soy sauce on salmon or with tofu.
I love that sauce also! If I’m in the mood for just spicy vs . sweet and spicy , I use Huy Fong chili-garlic sauce. One of my favorite breakfasts is kale -sauteed in coconut oil until the edges are crispy- topped with eggs and one of these sauces.
I love that you still have some picky eating in your family, even with grown-up kiddos. I hide spinach in pesto.
We have found that the best way to eat kale is with an avocado dressing. A smushed avocado, salt and your normal vinegar/olive oil dressing all tossed together. As my 13 year old says, “Even kale tastes good with an avocado dressing.” And my 10 year old doesn’t gag when he eats his two bites. Small victories.
Enjoy the weekend.
I just love the design of your table linens, fabrics featured in Time for Dinner Cookbook. I was wondering if you wouldn’t mind sharing the name of the designer or where I might be able to purchase similar items. They are so cheerful and European.
Just wanted to send a note of gratitude for your recent posts. I’m loving this series and look forward to them daily!! I’m a long-time follower who never comments, but needed to say THANK YOU.
I am really enjoying this series. I am a recent transplant to Westchester County and wonder about your favorite hiking parks in the area. Thanks for sharing.
Pantai Norasingh Sweetened Chili Sauce for Spring Roll
Or pick one with less English and more Thai
Mix apricot preserves with chili flakes and rice vinegar for a quick easy dipping sauce.
Have you watched the tv show Shtisel that is on Netflix? I started watching it after I watched Unorthodox and I’m loving it.
Hi Jenny, just wanted to say thanks for this series – I save it up & check only once or twice a week: such a treat in the current rythmn of this Mama of littles to think a little more broadly & daydream a little further ahead. Rich blessings!
Egg roll in a bowl used to be in our regular dinner rotation — thanks for the reminder! To make this SUPER easy, we buy bagged coleslaw mix (lasts forever in the fridge), brown some ground turkey (from the freezer) first, and don’t stress if we’re out of fresh ginger or onion for a great back up weeknight dinner option.
We’ve been loving this series. The quinoa bowl with spinach and onion from early on has been a favorite quarantine meal for us. We have a brand new baby at home so we are grateful for easy, fast, and nutritious meals!
I love the print backgrounds in your website and book Time for Dinner! Do you know where I might find kitchen and table linens with similar prints?
We started watching Fauda, on your recommendation. OMG!! I can’t watch more than 2-3 episodes in one sitting because my heart cannot take that kind of adrenaline! It’s so well done! thank you!!
Oh, and I baked a challah over the weekend, and will make ricotta gnocchi tonight.
second the TJ’s sweet chili sauce; will be trying the Mae Ploy suggestion for good measure:)
Two Chicks Farm Pepper Jelly is THE BEST dip for egg rolls. But any pepper jelly will probably do in a pinch.
I took a Chinese cooking class many years ago, from a lovely woman, Jane Huang. This is her recipe for Fruit Sauce.
1 cup apricot preserves
1 cup applesauce
1/2 cup Apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 cloves garlic
2 slices ginger
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
Mix all ingredients and cook over medium heat. Stir until mixture boils. Reduce heat. Simmer without lid for 15 minutes, pick out ginger root and garlic cloves, discard.
( I usually simmer until it reduces quite a bit…I know it’s much longer than 15 mins)
I love the Trader Joe’s sweet chili sauce, but it definitely runs on the sweet side so I usually add some sriracha or chili garlic sauce. Also I’ve seen several egg roll in a bowl recipe that call for ground pork, if you wanted to try a version with meat!
Very nice and delicious recipes
I love egg roll in a bowl and use ground turkey, chicken or pork in mine- although the egg looks darn good too! I like Marion Grasby’s sauces. She has a great series of how to videos and a line of products.