Dragon Bowl a la The Naam

I haven't been to The Naam in years.  The Naam is a 24 hour Vegetarian/Vegan Restaurant located in the Kitsilano neighbourhood of Vancouver.  The shredded carrots and beets that were called for in the previous night's Veggie Burger recipe reminded me of the Dragon Bowls at the Naam.  Sometimes I really don't know how I pull these things out of my butt, but it feels soooo good!  Especially when the recipe is a success!  

There are 5 varieties of these Dragons Bowls

1.  The Naam
Macrobiotic special with steamed veggies on organic brown rice with miso gravy, tofu, peanut sauce, organic alfalfa sprouts and wakame

2.  The Thai
A coconut curry sauce on steamed veggies and rice with deep-fried tofu, sprouts, grated, carrots and beets, and fresh cilantro

3.  The Mexi
A dragon bowl made with organic rice, chipotle chill, steamed veggies, salsa and cheese topped with carrots sprouts, beets, guacamole and miso gravy

4.  The Gold Dragon
A delicious mix of Naam fries, cheese, miso tracy, steamed veggies, sprouts, carrots and deep fried tofu

5.  The Dragon Plate
For vegan dragons!  Steamed broccoli, carrots and cauliflower on organic brown rice with miso gravy

They are mostly the same with their own spin.  I need to up my tofu recipes and thefirstmess did not disappoint with yet another fantastic recipe: Favourite Tofu!  She writes:

This stuff is so appealing that I’ve had no trouble getting younger and more squeamish populations to eat it. I used to spend some time helping with an after school program at a community food centre and garden when I lived in the city...
I’m not even exaggerating here: they were actually fighting for the last piece! It was an amazing sight, all of these youths gladly adorning their salads with morsels of locally sourced, wheat germ-coated plant protein. Unreal! 

This recipe is the bomb.  I made these Dragon Bowls again when Erin and her kids dropped by and ended up staying for dinner, and they were ALL over the tofu.  Crispy, full of flavour and still soft inside!

crispy tofu

serves: 4-6
notes: You’ve got to press the tofu. Once all of the tofu-y water is out of it, the texture is so much more agreeable and pleasant. I used chickpea flour in the coating, but any type would work. Typically, I enjoy these with brown rice, steamed greens and some herbs or cut tomatoes or something. They’re delicious on salad or solo with a bit of hot sauce too.
1/2 cup tamari (Soy Sauce)
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar (Rice Vinegar)
1/4 cup filtered water
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup nutritional yeast flakes (Did not use)
1/2 cup wheat germ
1/2 cup flour of your choice
2 tsp fine sea salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 (227g) package firm or extra-firm tofu
2 tbsp grape seed or other heat-tolerant oil (sunflower, canola etc)
Press the tofu: cut the slab into 1/2 inch thick pieces, crosswise (shorter pieces). Lay a kitchen towel across a cutting board and place the tofu pieces across the surface. Fold the towels over top, place a large book or another cutting board over towels. Place something heavy on top to draw out the moisture in the tofu. Leave this setup for about half an hour.
In the meantime, mix all of the marinade ingredients in one dish and all of the coating ingredients in another.
Remove tofu pieces from pressing setup, cut them in half and place in the dish with marinade mixture and cover. Leave this for at least 15 minutes. If marinating for longer than half an hour, place in the fridge.
Heat the oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat. Remove tofu pieces from marinade and toss in the coating mixture, shaking off excess. Place tofu pieces in the hot oil, being careful not to overcrowd the pan. Rotate the pan around to encourage even browning. Flip pieces with tongs (Or chopsticks!)  once browned on one side. When thoroughly browned on both sides, remove from pan onto a paper towel lined plate. Repeat with remaining pieces. Serve immediately.

There was enough leftover "flour" coating to make double the amount of tofu!

Halfway through my prep, I decided to Google miso gravy and see how complicated the recipes might be.  Some wonderful person actually managed to recreate a version based on having tried it at the Naam.  I didn't have all the ingredients but I figured having most of them, I would be ok.

2 Cups Water
1/2 Cup Nutritional Yeast
1/4 Cup Coconut Oil
2 Tbsp Sesame Oil
2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar 
(Substituted Rice Vinegar)
2 Tbsp Unrefined Sweetener
(Used Cane Sugar)
2 Large Garlic Cloves, minced/pressed
1 Tbsp Grated Ginger
1/2 Cup Gluten Free Flour
4 Tbsp Miso Paste

1. Bring all ingredients EXCEPT MISO to a boil

2.  Remove from stove

3.  Add Miso and process in a food processor or blender

Makes approximately 2.5 cups!

Words cannot describe how much I love this meal.  It's deliciously filling, can use any variety of veggies, and makes your body feel SO good!  The miso gravy made two giant jam jars which can also be used for homemade fries or as a salad dressing.

ENJOY!  You'll feel so good!


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