Carrot and onion rice

This recipe is a pretty good ‘un, in my opinion (I know, I know, who asked me?). Not only does it taste good, but it’s got veggies in it and it’s a way of naturally colouring your food without using chemicals. Now, there’s no way anyone could suggest I’m not up for dying food whenever I get the opportunity, but somehow it seems wrong to dye savoury food. Don’t know why! When you introduce sugar, all the bets are off…

Also, once you’ve softened your veggies, you bung the whole lot into rice cooker and let it cook. Easy! Obviously, you don’t have to eat this in a bento – it makes a great addition to a hot meal, too.

I really like this bento box – I have a thing for single tiered boxes. I also love Animal Crossing. I don’t know if the box is still available, but I bought it from J-List. (If you click that link, you’ll be taken to the J-List site, so if you buy anything, it earns me pennies to buy new bento stuff! Thank you!)

Teriyaki burger and carrot and onion rice

Recipe for carrot and onion rice

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups raw rice
  • 1 carrot
  • ½ onion
  • Butter
  • Splash soy sauce
  • Seasoning

METHOD

  • Process the onion and carrot until they are finely chopped, then sauté in butter until softened – but not browned. This will take around five minutes. Season and add the soy sauce.
  • Add to a rice cooker with washed rice and an equal amount of water, and cook as normal.

Scattered summer sushi

Late to the party again… here I am with scattered summer sushi in October. To be fair, I did come up with this recipe in May, but also, you can eat this any time of year, whether the weather’s sunny, or not. It’s the kind of dish that works better when it’s hot, but it’s still pretty nice around here even in autumn…

And yes, I did get carried away with decorating this, but it was worth it. So pretty! And not too much hassle to prepare, in the grand scheme of things.

Scattered summer sushi

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups Japanese rice (around 430g)
  • 6 tbsp sushi rice vinegar (or check label)
  • 1 tbsp sake (optional)
  • 1 piece dried konbu (optional)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tsp cornflour
  • Large pinch salt
  • Pinch sugar
  • Vegetable oil
  • 1 Cucumber
  • 1 Carrot
  • Handful mange tout (cooked)
  • 4 tofu pouches (optional)
  • 16 large prawns (shrimp)
  • 1/2 cup edamame beans (cooked)

METHOD

  • Make your sushi rice – I recommend you buy a rice cooker, as it takes all of the guesswork and stress out of cooking rice. Mine cost me about £10 three years ago and is still working fine. Firstly, wash the rice thoroughly and leave it to soak for half an hour. Then, drain and add your sushi rice to the same quantity of water in your rice cooker. Add the sake and konbu if using, then switch on and leave to cook. Once it has finished, leave it to rest for 15 minutes.
  • Turn the rice out into a damp, flat container (like a Pyrex oven dish) and add the sushi rice vinegar. Using a damp wooden spoon, turn the rice gently to coat it in the seasoning. At the same time, fan the rice to cool it and help it to absorb the dressing. Continue until no visible steam rises from the rice, and place it under a damp kitchen towel.
  • Make thin Japanese omelettes by combining the eggs, egg yolk, salt and sugar in a bowl. Add the cornflour dissolved in 4 tsp water. Heat the oil in a frying pan, and add enough oil to coat the base. Thinly cover the pan with the egg, and heat until almost set. Then, turn the omelette over to finish it off. Do not allow it to colour. Continue until all the egg has been cooked, then roll the omelettes up and shred them finely.
  • Prepare the carrot by peeling it and cutting it into thin discs. Then, using a flower-shaped cutter, cut the discs into flower shapes.
  • Use your cucumber to make a pretty garnish. A simple method is to cut the cucumber thinly on a diagonal, cut through it to the middle, and then twirl the ends in opposite directions (see picture).
  • If you’re using them, drain the tofu pouches and shred finely. Cut the mange tout at sharp diagonals.
  • Divide the sushi rice into four bowls. Scatter over the shredded tofu, omelette and edamame beans. Finally, arrange the carrots, cucumber and prawns.