Jan 19, 2017

Going Bowling

No, this hasn’t become a sports column. We’re talking about another fascinating food trend—bowls! While this piece of crockery has been around since the beginning of time it has now taken center stage. What began in 2014 with all-in-one breakfasts has morphed into a full-fledged movement with all types of meals being arranged beautifully in bowls and always photographed before eating. According to trendsetters, people feel the bowl makes everything a little more photogenic.

The bowl is very friendly, you can see everything—it shows up well on social media—a huge driver of food trends.  The #bowl hashtag has been used millions of times on everything from berry and oatmeal breakfasts to meat and potato dinners.  There are even a few bowl-focused cookbooks.  Writers feel that food gathered in a bowl brings out the contrast in flavors and textures like no plate ever can.

It started with acai berry bowls in Brazil. This super-fruit was pureed and blended with cream then served with additional fresh berries and whole grains. Next came Buddha bowls; rice based and filled with vegetables both raw and cooked. Some added healthy protein like soft boiled eggs or lean meat.  Soon every cuisine had its own version and bowl dishes could be found on restaurant menus throughout the world.

1/4 cup 100% fruit juice like orange, pineapple or guava

4 dried apricots, diced
1 cup low-fat Greek yogurt
1/2 medium pink grapefruit, cut into segments
4 ounces canned mandarin oranges, strained
1/4 cup bran flakes cereal
2 tablespoons toasted or raw pistachios, roughly chopped

Put the fruit juice and apricots in a small bowl, and cover. Microwave until the apricots are tender and the juice reduces to a thin syrup, 1 to 2 minutes. Let cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally to help cool faster. Alternately, this can be done in a small saucepan.
Put the yogurt in a cereal bowl. Spoon the apricot-guava compote into the center. Arrange the grapefruit, mandarin oranges, cereal and pistachios in neat piles or rows around the compote.

For the mango dressing:

1 cup diced fresh mango

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar or rice vinegar

2 tablespoons coconut milk

1 teaspoon honey

Pinch of red pepper flakes

For the bowl:

1 sweet potato, diced

3 cups broccoli

4 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon sea salt or kosher salt

1 tablespoon chili sauce or sweet chili sauce

1 1/2 cups cooked chicken (grilled, baked or any sort of leftovers)

1 cup baby spinach or baby kale, checked

1 avocado, sliced

1 mango, cubed

1 cup cooked rice

Preheat your oven to 400°F

In a food processor or blender, blend all ingredients for mango sauce and set aside.

On two lined baking sheet, toss sweet potatoes and broccoli separately with oil and salt. Roast for 45 minutes until fork tender. When done, toss each separately with chili paste.

Assemble the bowls:

Use 2 soup bowls.

Place 1/2 cup each of greens and rice in each bowl.

Arrange roasted potatoes, broccoli, avocado, chicken, and mango nicely around the bowl. Drizzle carefully with sauce.

3 cups cooked quinoa

1 pkg shredded green cabbage

1 pkg shredded red cabbage

1/2 cup diced scallions

3/4 cup chopped almonds

2 medium-size sweet potatoes, diced

1 tablespoon canola oil

Kosher salt

For the dressing:

1/3 cup peanut butter

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

3 cloves garlic

3 inches peeled fresh ginger

juice of 3 limes

Preheat the oven to 450°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Toss the sweet potato pieces in one tablespoon of oil until they are coated. Spread them on the baking pan and sprinkle them with salt. Bake 20 minutes or until crispy

Prepare the dressing by adding the ingredients to a food processor and blending until smooth. Add water to thin if needed.

Next, rinse the cooked quinoa and transfer to a large bowl. Blot dry with a few paper towels to remove any excess water.  Divide quinoa among 4 bowls. Add the cabbages. Add the sweet potatoes to the bowl along with the chopped almonds, and scallions. Drizzle with the dressing and serve.

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