Coconut Rice Fall Veggie Bowl, full of wonderful colors of Fall and the produce that this season blesses us with. Roasted acorn squash, stir fried veggies, and some beautiful crisp shredded lettuce, to freshen things up a bit. Dressed with a Sesame Wasabi Mayo dressing.
Coconut Rice Fall Veggie Bowl. A dish that exemplifies the colors and tastes of fall. Utilizing acorn squash, some peppers, two kinds of zucchini, and fresh crisp lettuce, taking us on a textural journey. I have to say that rice bowls are high up on my list of favorite recipes or dishes to make. I love the diverse flavor combinations, the use of sweet and spicy, the coconut rice, aromatic and nutty, and that dressing that just bites you in the end, keeping your interest intact. What a way to say Autumn.
I remember the first time I had coconut rice. It was 2005, at a local Thai restaurant called The Red Curry Thai Restaurant. I could not believe the flavors of this rice. The aroma had me falling in love with this rice. Bite after bite, nutty, sweet, and combined with the red curry chicken I had with it, WOW!
Coconut Rice Fall Veggie Bowl, The Inspiration Begins.
I am not a huge fan of Autumn, one being that it is the sign that summer has ended, and the other means winter is around the corner. Well for us here in central Alberta Canada, it was a very sharp corner and it looks like winter has stepped into fall. The one good thing is the produce that is flooding the Old Strathcona Farmers Market. Lovely squashes, peppers, cabbage, last of the tomatoes, potatoes, carrots, beets, (remember to breath!), onions and celery, etc. Heaven for those of us who love making comfort, hearty, warm me up, so damn delicious recipes. Our usual Saturday market run, brought us back so great produce and in the roster, a beautiful sweet acorn squash from Sunrise Gardens (even our cats love them, since every Saturday we buy there fresh wheatgrass for them). Immediately, Nicoletta had an ah ha moment and said, "this would be great in a rice bowl dish." There you have it, inspiration complete and our recipe for Coconut Rice Fall Veggie Bowl is born.
This dish is a lot of fun to make, utilizing many cooking styles and textures, along with a dichotomy of sweet and savory flavors, that have you diving in two chopsticks at a time for another bite. The steps of this dish are quite simple. The rice always follow suggested cooking methods on package. The squash a quick cleaning and cut into half round slices, placed in the oven to roast till soft on the inside and crispy on the outside. While those were baking I stir fried the veggies that Nicoletta so nicely chopped for me. I love that she has all this prepared for me. It is like walking into a studio kitchen, and everything is ready to go. She also had the squash ready, so more than 80 percent of this recipe was done by Nicoletta. When rice squash and veggies are cooked, it is time to assemble. A nice portion of coconut rice on the bottom, some veggies placed artistically on the rice along with the acorn squash, some fresh crisp lettuce shreds, and now for the dressing. In a squeeze bottle, a beautiful drizzle over the top I also made a side ramekin of sweet chili vinaigrette which I like to pour over the top just to add another level of flavor and acidity to this dish, and it works so well with the coconut rice and veggies.
The flavors are amazing from the soft and crispy sweetness of the squash, to the sizzled stir fry zucchinis, and peppers, and not to mention the crisp fresh lettuce all dressed in that pungent, semi sweet and spicy sesame wasabi mayo that adds that ever so sneaky punch at the end. If you do use the sweet chili vinegar, it adds such a nice acidity to the mix, and with that oh so aromatic nutty coconut rice seems strange yet so magical and delicious. I hope you enjoy this Autumn colorfully flavor packed Coconut Rice Fall Veggie Bowl as much as we did. Get to your local farmers market and start enjoying all those fall jewels.
Song of the day: "Come a little Closer." by Cage The Elephant.Print
- 1 small acorn squash
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon herb blend (basil, oregano, sage, thyme)
- Salt and pepper
- 1 zucchini
- 1 yellow zucchini
- 1 red pepper
- 1 orange pepper
- 1 green onion chopped
- 1 Tbsp Lemongrass
- 1 tsp Ginger
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 1 Tbsp canola oil
- 1 Tbsp sesame oil
- Pinch of Chinese all spice
- 2 tablespoons vegetable stock
- Salt and pepper to taste
- ¼ cup Coconut milk
- 1 cup Jasmine rice
- 1 and ¾ cups water (for the rice)
- Salt and pepper
- ½ cup shredded lettuce
Sesame Wasabi Mayo dressing:
- ¼ cup mayo
- 1 tsp wasabi
- 1 tsp sesame oil
- ¼ tsp rice wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon hoisin sauce
- salt and pepper to taste
- Slice squash in half, and scoop out seeds and pulp.
- Cut squash into half round slices approx 1 cm thick.
- Dress with olive oil, a mix of dried herbs (we used our homemade oregano, sage, thyme, basil mix), salt and pepper.
- Place on baking sheet and into a pre heated 375° F oven for about 20 minutes.
- In a medium sauce pan add rice, coconut milk, water, a dash of salt, cover and bring to a boil then turn down to a simmer for about 15 minutes.
- Turn off heat and keep covered.
- In a wok heat up 1 tablespoon of canola oil and 1 teaspoon of sesame oil.
- Toss in red pepper, orange pepper, zucchini, yellow zucchini. Stir fry for about 10 minutes.
- Add in garlic, ginger, and lemon grass, five spice, and stir fry for another minute.
- Add in a couple of tablespoons of vegetable broth. Reduce and take off heat.
Sesame Wasabi Dressing:
- In a bowl whisk mayo, wasabi, sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, sugar, hoisin sauce, salt and pepper to taste.
- Place in squeezable bottle.
- Fork rice to fluff it up a bit and place a nice amount in a bowl.
- Arrange veggies and squash, and add a small handful of shredded lettuce to the bowl.
- Drizzle the dressing over the top.
- Ready to serve.
For the dressing, substitute with vegan mayo for a vegan option.
- Serving Size: 4 servings
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