Bibimbap Rice Bowl with Meat and Vegetables

It may not roll off your tongue (if you’re not used to it), but bibimbap means a variety of ingredients mixed with rice. So, essentially, a Korean rice bowl. You make this meal in layers, building up the rice, then the meat, the veggies, sauce, and finally top it all with an egg. It’s really flexible though, sort of a Korean spin on cleaning out the fridge.  This particular bibimbap rice bowl recipe is loosely inspired by a recipe I found on Korean Kitchen.

However, I didn’t have all the ingredients she used, such as sprouts or seaweed, and under current circumstances, I didn’t really want to go out looking for them. The idea was to make this easy for myself, and for you too.  In addition, I also wanted to focus on “sturdier” ingredients, such as cabbage and carrots that will last in the fridge, rather than sprouts. You could even use frozen veggies (cook them for less time), like broccoli or one of those frozen stir fry mixes. Definitely not authentic, but still good.

Since I was using cabbage, which takes longer to cook, I just chopped the carrot up, instead of julienning it. That way, the two vegetables would be ready at the same time.

You make this in several stages. If you are using brown rice, start that first, and let it cook while you put the meat mixture together and let that sit so the flavors blend together. If you have white rice, start the meat mixture, and then put up the rice about half way through.




Bibimbap Rice Bowl Substitutions and Variations

  • try different vegetables, such as broccoli, mushrooms, bell pepper, or zucchini
  • swap the beef for ground chicken or even leftover fish
  • this should properly be made with gochujang, which is a spicy Korean pepper paste; if you have it, use it and add about 3/4 tsp water.

 

More Cabbage Recipes

chinese chicken noodle cabbage soupChinese Chicken Noodle Cabbage Soup for One Person

Wonderful comfort food when. you’re stuck inside. Just enough soup for a generous serving for one.   The spicy hot broth helps clear your head , the garlic, ginger, and chili sauce have anti-bacterial (not viruses, bacteria) qualities, and it’s delicious.

asian chicken salad with cabbageSingle Serving Asian Chicken Salad with Cabbage Recipe

Colorful, spicy, and frankly more colors makes a dish look and feel more appetizing.  Works with chicken, leftover pork, or even add some cooked noodles or rice instead.

 

unstuffed cabbage roll recipeSmall Batch Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls Recipe

Stuffed cabbage is delicious, and pantry-friendly. But making all those separate rolls is a pain. So don’t bother.  Layer it like lasagne instead!

 




Szechuan Chili Noodles Recipe

Stuffy head? Allergies starting to act up?  I’ve got the creeping crud, so this recipe for Szechuan chili noodles immediately caught my attention. It’s a cousin to Dan Dan noodles, but a lot simpler, with ingredients that are easier to find if you live in a western country and far fewer steps. Dan dan noodles require making the chili oil, then the meat mixture, and finally noodles and vegetables.  For this recipe, you only have to make the oil and the noodles. Call it Chinese-inspired.

You can make this with ground chicken or pork, or leave it as is (fewer things to buy and cook) and have it as a vegetarian dish. I didn’t have any ground meat handy (it was all in the freezer) so I went without. If you don’t have baby bok choy, green cabbage will do just as well.

You can get pre-made chili oil, but (at least the brand I got) has an odd metallic taste that I don’t like. It’s easy enough to make yourself, and only requires one extra small bowl (no additional pots!) to hold the mixture while you make the rest of the recipe.

Now about the actual noodles. The recipe I adapted this from used what she called “wide Chinese egg noodles.” I had never seen that.  I looked and couldn’t find anything easily. Then in the comments she said it was really pappardelle. OK! Easier to find (and I love pappardelle). Plus then I get to make White Ragu Pappardelle  with the rest of the pasta. If you want to be more authentic, use real Chinese wheat noodles or rice noodles.

One final recipe note.  The original calls for chili paste (sambal oelek), which is essentially just a jar of spicy, ground chilis.  You can get it online, or check your grocer. If you can’t find it, substitute garlic chili sauce (and possibly remove the garlic clove from the recipe, depending on how spicy you like your food).  If not, then substitute sriracha or even hot sauce instead.

The whole thing comes together in about 30 minutes or so.




Szechuan Chili Noodles Tools and Ingredients


Huy Fong Sambal Oelek Chili Paste
Made by the same company that produces the wildly popular sriracha sauce. This is spicier, since it has more chili in it.  Put it on noodles, in omelettes, or in soup.

 

Huy Fong Chili Garlic Sauce

The same great chili paste, plus extra garlic! Use it in Pad Thai, mix into eggs, stir fries, soups, or any food that needs a kick of flavor. I sometimes put it in my caldo verde. Doesn’t have sugar (unlike the sriracha sauce) so it’s more potent (also good if you want to avoid extra sugar).

 

More Asian and Chinese Noodle Recipes

chinese chicken noodle cabbage soupChinese Chicken Noodle Cabbage Soup for One Person

Fragrant with garlic, spicy chili, and a hint of sweetness from honey, this Chinese chicken noodle cabbage soup tastes good and knocks out germs too.

 

spicy sesame noodlesSpicy Sesame Noodles Recipe

Easier than takeout, and ideal for a quick meal. All you have to cook is the noodles. A bit of chopping and arranging later you’ve got food.

 

easy singapore noodles with chickenEasy Singapore Noodles with Chicken 

A classic dish that does two things: makes dinner and cleans out the fridge. Toss in chicken, beef, and whatever bits and pieces of veggies you have.

 

spicy beef noodle soupSpicy Beef Noodle Soup for One

A few pantry ingredients, some leftovers and you’ve got soup. And, it only takes a few minutes to make. Comforting on a cold day, or if the creeping crud or allergies are making you stuffy.




One Pot Polish Sausage and Cabbage with Potatoes

Fall has finally shown up (at least briefly), so it’s time for hearty comfort food.  This Polish sausage and cabbage with potatoes recipe is both easy to make and filling.  It’s a great meal for a chilly autumn day.  There are only a few basic, everyday ingredients, but it still manages to be packed with flavor from rich sausage,  braised cabbage, buttery Yukon Gold potato, and sweet carrot.

And, as a bonus, you get your entire dinner cooked while only using a single pot. As far as I’m concerned, less cleaning and washing up is always a good thing.

The technique is really simple, and there’s not a lot of fiddling.  Basically, all you have to do to get a delicious dinner is to slice up and brown the sausage, add the veggies and broth, and then let the whole thing simmer slowly in the pot.

It takes less than an hour to make and you don’t have to stand over a hot stove while your dinner cooks.  You can go do something else instead.  For instance, you can pour yourself a glass of red wine and unwind from a long day or make a mug of hot, spiced apple cider.

It’s not fancy, or fussy, just good plain hearty food.

I used a Yukon gold potato, because they have a richer, more buttery flavor.  However, an Eastern potato (or white potato) will work too.  Avoid Russet (Idaho) potatoes, as they are best for baking (OK, I avoid them anyway because I don’t like them; they’re too floury).




Polish Sausage and Cabbage with Potatoes Substitutions and Variations

  • Try using bacon instead of the sausage
  • Swap the sliced potatoes for 4 oz of egg noodles (cook them separately, then add them at the end and toss everything together)
  • Season the dish with some paprika
  • If you’re out of chicken broth, you can use water instead
  • Add some cut up bell pepper

More Sausage and Cabbage Recipes

unstuffed cabbage roll recipeSmall Batch Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls Recipe

Stuffed cabbage is delicious. But making all those individual rolls is a pain. So skip the rolls. Layer it all (like lasagne) instead.

 

kielbasa with sauerkraut and applesKielbasa with Sauerkraut and Apples

Sausage, sauerkraut, and apples complement each other beautifully and the honey mustard sauce adds a delightful sweet tangy flavor.  This is pantry-friendly and only requires one pot.

bibimbap rice bowlBibimbap Rice Bowl with Meat and Vegetables

A full meal in one little bowl. It’s got layers of vibrant veggies, a spicy sauce, and ground meat, all topped with a single fried egg.




Chinese Chicken Noodle Cabbage Soup for One Person

I’ve been fighting the creeping crud and nothing helps fight germs better than a big bowl of soup, preferably spicy soup.  This Chinese chicken noodle cabbage soup is perfect. The spicy broth clears the sinuses, the garlic, ginger and chili sauce have antibiotic qualities, and it tastes good too.

I adapted the recipe from a recipe I found on Epicurious.  It’s not just smaller quantities though. My version has less sugar, and is a bit spicier (I wanted the heat more than sweetness). Gotta fight those germs!  Also, since I didn’t have tahini handy (and wouldn’t want to buy it just for this), I ditched that and used peanut butter instead.  I didn’t have seasoned rice vinegar either, so I substituted the regular kind. Their recipe cooked the chicken by boiling it in the soup.  I decided I wanted more complex, caramelized flavor, so I cooked it with the cabbage.  And, since I didn’t have sherry I reasoned that since sherry was essentially fortified wine, that some red wine and a drizzle of honey would work just fine. It did!

This is enough for one generous serving, or two smaller ones, depending on how hungry you are.




Chinese Chicken Noodle Cabbage Soup Substitutions and Variations

  • Add some sliced mushrooms, broccoli, or snow peas to the soup (when you cook the cabbage and scallions)
  • Substitute bok choy for the cabbage
  • Want it spicier? Drizzle the finished soup with some sriracha or more chili garlic sauce
  • Go with the original recipe and use the tahini instead of the peanut butter
  • Like it less spicy?  Use sriracha in the recipe instead of the chili garlic sauce

Chinese Chicken Noodle Cabbage Soup Ingredients

Huy Fong Sauce Chili Garlic

This is great for lots of recipes: put it in Chinese eggplant with garlic sauce, chili citrus chicken thighs, sesame noodles, or add a kick to scrambled eggs or meatloaf. Or, mix it into mayonnaise for chili aioli.

Marukan Organic Rice Vinegar 12 oz bottle
Marukan Organic Rice Vinegar 12 oz bottle

This is just about essential for Asian cooking. Use it in this recipe, or for an Asian cole slaw. Baste meat with it, or combine it with some soy sauce, garlic, ginger, sesame oil, and scallions for a quick dipping sauce.


Napa Valley Naturals Organic Toasted Sesame Oil 12.7 oz bottle
Napa Valley Naturals Organic Toasted Sesame Oil 12.7 oz bottle

Another essential for Asian cooking, great for salad dressings, shrimp, or teriyaki. Use it in Chinese cucumber salad, or saute it with some spinach.

 

More Asian Recipes

sichuan chinese chicken and eggplant with garlic sauceSichuan Chinese Chicken and Eggplant with Garlic Sauce

No takeout? No problem. Make this spicy chicken with ingredients you probably already have around.

 

spicy sesame noodlesSpicy Sesame Noodles Recipe for One Person

Another takeout classic, which you can easily make yourself.  Some recipes call for non-standard household ingredients like tahini or sesame paste. Great, but not necessarily available everywhere. But, lots of us have peanut butter! Use that instead. Then slurp up your noodles.

spicy beef noodle soupSpicy Beef Noodle Soup for One

This is practically instant soup. Just dump, pour, heat, and eat. The whole thing takes 10 minutes if you have cooked leftover beef.

 

szechuan chili noodlesSzechuan Chili Noodles Recipe

Like dan dan noodles? This version is much easier, with more readily available ingredients. Make the chili oil, make the noodles, toss in the veggies, and mix it all together.

 




Asian Chicken Salad with Cabbage

As colorful as it is tasty, this Asian chicken salad with cabbage proved to be an inspired invention. I was sick and didn’t feel like cooking much, plus I could hardly taste anything.

This colorful, spicy salad helped improve my appetite. It looked pretty (with the cabbage, peppers, and carrots), and I could taste it! It was also a good way to keep using up the giant cabbage I got from FreshDirect.

Asian chicken salad with cabbage is pretty easy to make, and you can make the dressing in advance if you like.

Before I got sick I had defrosted a chicken thigh that I had to use up, so I just seasoned that with ginger, garlic, a bit of soy sauce, and some sriracha. Then all I had to do was pop it in the oven for an hour.  Easy! The recipe would also work just fine with leftover rotisserie chicken, or even some leftover Chinese pork.

If you don’t want meat, you could add cold noodles, ramen noodles, slivered almonds, or extra veggies.

The dressing is straight from a recipe I found online in The New York Times recipe section.  I don’t like a lot of dressing, so this made about 4 servings of dressing for me. Your mileage may vary.





I had a big bag of mini mixed bell peppers, so I used those (they also helped make the food look more appealing) and a seedless cucumber, so that’s what I used.

You could use regular bell peppers, add snow peas, mushrooms, or regular cucumbers too.  Food should be flexible, and unless it’s baking, you should adjust recipes to fit what you have or what you prefer to eat.

Ingredients and Tools for This Recipe

black and decker mini chopper

Black & Decker Food Chopper

I use this all the time. It’s so much easier than dragging out a big food processor. And, with space at a premium, it’s a lot easier to store it too. Use it for the dressing, to chop garlic or onions, cut up potatoes, and make pesto without making a big mess.


Huy Fong, Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce, 17 Ounce Bottle

This stuff has become so popular it’s almost a cliché, but it’s also versatile enough to use in eggs, salads, meatballs, or on chicken. Just a little bit adds a big punch of flavor, without being too spicy or too sweet.

 

More Asian Recipes with Chicken or Cabbage

Chinese Chicken Noodle Cabbage Soup for One Person

Bibimbap Rice Bowl with Meat and Vegetables

Honey Sticky Garlic Chicken

Sichuan Chinese Chicken and Eggplant with Garlic Sauce




Small Batch Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls Recipe

I just love stuffed cabbage, but making all those individual rolls is just a big pain in the neck.  It looks good, but it’s labor-intensive and all that work is just not worth it (unless you want to impress company). And, most recipes make enough to feed a small army.  Great for a crowd, but not so great when you’re cooking for one.  What I really wanted was a small batch unstuffed cabbage rolls recipe. Something easy to put together.

I decided there must be an easier way.  I saw a recipe for unstuffed cabbage rolls, made with meatballs and shredded cabbage.  Make the meatballs, shred the cabbage, and pile the meatballs on the cabbage. It sounded good (and more of a savory, than sweet/sour recipe).  That’s still quite a bit of work.

Then, I hit on an easier method. Instead of making individual rolls, or shredding cabbage, I would layer it instead. Like lasagna!

So, that’s what I did.  It’s easiest if you cut the core of the cabbage off first. Then the leaves will come off more easily.

I started with Joan Nathan’s Chosen Stuffed Cabbage Recipe, cut out the raisins, reduced the quantities, and added sriracha for a bit of a punch.

I cut off a few cabbage leaves, made the filling and the sauce, and then put the whole thing in a square baking pan.  It was enough for several meals, and proved to be a life-saver as I got sick a few days later.  Since I had all that unstuffed cabbage, I didn’t have to cook much.

If you don’t want to eat cabbage every day for several days, cut it into individual portions and freeze them in plastic containers.

Also,  you may notice I used red cabbage instead of green. I bought the red to make no mayo healthy cole slaw.  I figured I might as well use it for this too. If you prefer, go ahead and use green. I think it looks prettier this way.




Substitutions and Variations for Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls

  • use ground turkey instead of beef
  • try a combination of ground pork and beef
  • try adding 1/4 C raisins

Ingredients and Tools for Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls

Square Baking Pan

This pan is a staple for every kitchen. If you don’t have one, you should.  Use it for stuffed cabbage, large batches of brownies, or cakes.  It’s heavy-duty, so it won’t warp. The handles make it much easier to take the hot pan out of the oven too.

Cuisinart Mixing Bowls

I have had these bowls…forever.  They stack neatly inside each other (important in a small kitchen), and the lids mean you can use them for storing leftovers, or for something that has to marinate overnight. And, the lids seal nicely so your food won’t slosh all over the inside of your fridge.

More Cabbage Recipes

Quick Creole Cabbage and Sausage

Spicy Beef Noodle Soup for One

Cranberry Chipotle Turkey Enchilada

One Pot Polish Sausage and Cabbage with Potatoes

 




Cranberry Chipotle Turkey Enchilada

Thanksgiving is great, but finding new and different ways to use up the leftovers can be a bit of a challenge. However, it’s also an opportunity to be creative. I had an idea for a turkey cranberry chipotle turkey enchilada and went looking for cranberry chipotle salsa or even some cranberry relish in the supermarket.  The store had both, but I eventually decided I didn’t want to buy a whole jar (and end up with more leftovers to use up).  So I created my own instead.

I took some of the leftover turkey, a few craisins (dried sweetened cranberries), and added chipotle salsa which I already had (and could use for other recipes like chili or meatloaf). I combined them together to make cranberry chipotle turkey enchiladas.

If you already have cranberry relish or cranberry salsa from your own dinner that would work beautifully too.

It’s pretty simple. Just warm up the turkey, heat the tortilla in some oil, add the rest of the ingredients, and roll it up into an enchilada.

A few weeks ago, those tortillas were “crepes“, but this time I decided to use them as intended on the package!




 

Tools and Ingredients for Turkey Cranberry Chipotle Enchiladas

 


OXO Good Grips Box Grater

Much as I love my zester/microplane, there are some jobs that require a different tool. A box grater can slice or shred food better than a zester can. Use this to shred or slice cheese, carrots, onions, and potatoes or to coarsely grate citrus peels (use the microplane for finer results).

This particular grater comes with its own marked storage container, so you can measure while you’re grating and just make exactly the amount you need.


SilverStone Ceramic 8-Inch Deep Skillet, Chili Red

I don’t like the old-style non-stick pans, but I confess I am enjoying using my ceramic pan. I can make eggs, enchiladas, frittatas, and many other things without worrying about it sticking and it cleans up easily. So far, the coating has held up beautifully. I don’t have this exact pan, but if I had seen the red I would have gotten that one in a New York minute. Do keep the heat a bit lower than you would with a stainless steel pan, and be careful if you have a glass top stove.

More Turkey Recipes

Quick and Easy Spicy Turkey Soup

Leftover Turkey Soup Recipe

Sweet and Sour Turkey Meatballs with Jelly and Chili Sauce




Spicy Beef Noodle Soup for One

It’s creeping crud season, and while I’m not quite sick, I’m definitely not feeling quite well either. I was browsing through Pinterest and spotted a spicy beef noodle soup recipe. I was about to save it when I realized I already had one! So I made that instead.

The beauty of this is that it’s really easy, and quick, as well as being spicy (good for fighting germs), hot (the steam is good for fighting congestion) and comforting on a cold day.  I sort of got this recipe from my online friend Terry. She had posted a “recipe” (no amounts or detailed directions, just the ingredients) for a spicy beef noodle soup that sounded awfully good.

She used red pepper which I didn’t have, as well as a specialty Korean chili sauce (which I also didn’t have). However, cooking is part following what someone else is done, part inspiration, and part improvisation, so I went with improvisation.

I did have cabbage, and I also had leftover steak, sriracha, and chili garlic sauce. I figured those would work just fine for my beef noodle soup.




If you don’t have turkey stock, you could use beef or even chicken if you prefer (see improvisation!). If you want to make your own turkey stock,  the recipe is here.

Either way, once you have the stock, the rest of the soup is really easy to make and only needs a few ingredients.

Start the noodles first, then while they’re cooking, heat the stock in a separate pot and add the other ingredients. Or, you could throw everything (except the steak!) in one pot. If you do, the noodles will absorb a lot of the liquid, so you’ll need more.

Since I had the leftover steak,  I didn’t even have to cook that. If you don’t, cook that while the noodles are cooking, and then add it to the soup at the last minute.

Another thing about this spicy beef noodle soup is that with all that garlicky, spicy goodness it will kill any germs that may be plaguing you!

Spicy Beef Noodle Soup Substitutions and Variations

  • Use roasted gochujang (which is what Terry used)
  • Swap the steak for cooked turkey (especially if you still have turkey to use up), add that at the end, just for a minute to heat up
  • Add sliced red peppers
  • Put in some mushrooms; crimini or other stronger flavored varieties would work best

Tools and Ingredients for Spicy Beef Garlic Soup

Chili Garlic Sauce

I love this stuff. It’s got a stronger kick, and less sugar, than the sriracha, plus the extra heat (and spiciness) from garlic.  It’s great in meatloaf, on eggs, in soup, or in a sauce. Think garlicky salsa.

 


Huy Fong Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce

If you prefer a hint of sweetness, you might like this instead of the chili garlic sauce (or use them both).  Squeeze it over eggs, into soup, on enchiladas, or burritos.  It’s also good for stir-fry. Think of it as ketchup with a kick.

More Small Batch Soup Recipes

Curried Chicken Soup

Quick and Easy Spicy Leftover Turkey Soup

Chinese Chicken Noodle Cabbage Soup for One Person

Moroccan Chicken and Bean Soup




No Mayo Healthy Cole Slaw Recipe for One

I like cabbage, and cole slaw, but most of the recipes are too heavy and have too much mayo. I feel as if I’m eating mayo, rather than cabbage. This no mayo healthy cole slaw recipe is different. It’s healthy and has no mayo at all.

I was at The Second Avenue Deli, which is a restaurant that specializes in food that is definitely not healthy:  fried pierogies, chopped liver, and enormous pastrami and corned beef sandwiches.  But, before you get your main dish, they plop down a big bowl of pickles and another of their “health salad.”  The salad is delicious! And no mayo.

The next day, I found a recipe, which I have adapted. I reduced the servings and made a few substitutions and changes.

Delicious! And it’s easy too.  It’s great as a side dish with a turkey sandwich (or on top of one), or along with a hot dog.  Or, pastrami, of course. Because mayo and pastrami is a shonda (a terrible disgrace, especially in public).




 

Substitutions and Variations for No Mayo Healthy Cole Slaw Recipe

  • Use green cabbage (which is what the original recipe said)
  • Make it with green pepper (again the original recipe)
  • Add some cucumber
  • Try apple cider vinegar
  • Make it Asian with rice vinegar, soy sauce. and sesame oil

Try These Side Dish Recipes

Honey Mustard Glazed Carrots for One

Roasted Cinnamon Nutmeg Butternut Squash

Roasted Paprika Potatoes

Sauteed Garlic Parmesan Spinach




Quick Creole Cabbage and Sausage

This creole cabbage and sausage recipe is quick and easy to put together. Just the ting when you want a quick dinner. Don’t be intimidated by the ingredients list.  The creole seasoning and the mustard are fairly easy to find.

If you can’t find them, or don’t want to buy a whole jar of something for one recipe, it’s pretty easy to make both from ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen.  There are links to recipes for each of them further down on the page. I keep a repurposed jam jar of the creole seasoning in my cupboard so it’s ready when I need it.

I used a spicy chicken sausage here, but you could use andouille sausage or hot Italian sausage if you prefer.  Just cook it a bit more, and eliminate (or reduce) the first tablespoon of oil.




Here are links to recipes for the creole seasoning and the mustard. Just toss (or mix) ingredients together and you’re done.

Creole Seasoning Recipe

Creole Mustard Recipe

More Sausage and Cabbage Recipes

Pasta with Broccoli, Mushrooms, and Chicken Sausage

Single Serving Asian Chicken Salad with Cabbage Recipe

Small Batch Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls Recipe

One Pot Polish Sausage and Cabbage with Potatoes