Chinese vegetables in homemade hoisin sauce
Had a hankering for Chinese food the other day, & realised that fruit & a salad just wasn't gonna cut it for dinner for once. Or, more specifically, I had a hankering for some sweet, gooey hoisin sauce. So I thought I'd look up a recipe for it, & see if it was possible to make it raw. It mostly was:
* 4 tablespoons nama shoyu
* 2 tablespoons raw peanut butter (or raw cashew butter, but won't taste as authentic)
* 4 fresh dates, pitted
* 2 teaspoons raw cider vinegar
* 1 small garlic clove
* 2 teaspoons sesame oil
* 20 drops chinese hot sauce, habenero or jalepeno, or fresh chili pepper
* 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
Enough veg for 4 people, e.g.:
* 1 small onion or large shallot, thinly sliced
* 1 red pepper, thinly sliced
* 1 small carrot, shaved into slithers with a vegetable peeler or julienned
* 1 head of a small bok choi, stems and leaves separated & each thinly sliced
* 8-10 button mushrooms, or some shitaki mushrooms, sliced
* handful of sugar snap peas or mangetout
Blend the ingredients for the hoisin sauce in a powerful blender, or in a food processor. If it's too thick, add water. If it's not sweet enough, add more dates (& water as necessary). This wasn't too hot, but you might want to add the hot sauce or chili a little at a time if you're not keen on hot food. Remember when tasting it though that it'll be spread out quite thinly on the veg.
Chop the vegetables & place them in a large bowl. Stir in the hoisin to coat. Leave to marinade & warm in a dehydrator for at least 1/2 hour (or just leave on the side to marinade if you don't want to serve this warm). Stir in veg like sugar snap peas & the stems of bok choi just before serving, so they stay crunchy (add the bok choi leaves at the beginning though).
Serve over courgette/zuchini noodles, raw kelp noodles or a big bed of greens. (If you want kelp noodles to be soft like cooked noodles, stir them into the hoisin along with the veg - they'll soften up just like the veg does.)
I only used half the sauce for two people, & so far the other half has kept well in the fridge for three days. Not sure how long it'll stay fresh though, but it should keep a little while due to the vinegar & shoyu.