As the weather cools, we appreciate warmer meals that our body craves to keep us warm. However, hearty meals can also be healthier and free of many preservatives.
This inspiration comes from a vintage 1980's dress I found that is covered in bamboo design.
This 1980's dress is white with a blue fence covered in bamboo, which reminds me a lot of what I see in Seattle. Seattle actually has quit a bit of bamboo growing throughout the city.
I kept thinking of bamboo, and what to try differently than the traditional brown or garlic sauce. I wanted to create something with crunch but was still healthier and does not include many preservative-based sauces.
When you make meals at home, you have the control on what you put into the sauce. This has a similarity to the sweet and sour sauce because of the sweetness of the apricot jam, but made in a much more healthier way especially compared to many jarred sauces.
Let the bamboo inspire your wellness and wellbeing. The plant bamboo, also has spiritual symbolism to aide us through this difficult time.
Bamboo is a symbol of strength and health. Bruce Lee stated about bamboo, “Notice that the stiffest tree is most easily cracked, while the bamboo or willow survives by bending with the wind.”
It symbolizes strength as the wood is stronger than concrete and steel. The bamboo is strong but also flexible. It may sway in a. storm, but often does not break from turbulent times.
In terms of health, bamboo symbolizes harmony and peace, and also has antibacterial properties.
This vintage dress and other vintage items are available on my Etsy shop, The Elizabethan Closet.
Broccolini, Bamboo Shoots + Tofu in Apricot Sauce
Cook Time: 20-30 minutes
1 12oz pack of fried tofu (or use regular tofu)**See Note
16 oz broccolini
1 can of water chestnuts, drained and rinsed
1 can of bamboo shoots, drained and rinsed
2-3 tbsp canola oil
1 15.2 oz jar of apricot jam
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup soy sauce or tamari
1/2-1 tbsp sugar (optional)
2 cups of rice
Begin by cooking the rice in a pot according to the package directions. Generally its a 1:2 rice to water ratio so 2 cups of rice will be cooked in 4 cups of water.
Saute the broccolini in a pan with 2 tbsp of canola oil for 3-4 minutes. While cooking, mix the sauce ingredients into the bowl.
From here, if you have room you can add the tofu, or cook the tofu in a separate pan with one tbsp of canola oil, cooking evenly on both sides.
Next, add the sauce to the broccolini as well as the bamboo shoots and water chest nuts. Simmer on medium-low heat until warm and the broccolini is edible but still keeps a crunch.
Once the tofu is crispy and cooked on all sides, add to the broccolini and then mix until well combined. Serve over the cooked rice.
**Note: Fried tofu is found in the refrigerator section at many Asian grocery stores. Also, the jam is often sweet enough and may not require additional sugar, but for those want it extra-sweet can place sugar in the sauce mixture.
Recipe inspired by How Sweet Eats.
Let's Connect! Check out my other Asian-inspired recipes below!
Elizabeth Rae Kovar M.A. is Author of her memoir, Finding Om and is a Fitness Trainer, Yogi, Reiki Master, Presenter and Lover of Life. To view her portfolio please visit www.elizabethkovar.com