I made this for dinner Saturday night.
1 box whole wheat spaghetti
1 can sliced bamboo shoots
1 can sliced water chesnuts
seasoned bean curd (optional)
Newman's Own Lighten Up Low Fat Sesame Ginger Dressing
Get a pot of water boiling for the pasta--it will take the longest to cook, so start the water first! Drop in the noodles as soon as the water is boiling to your satisfaction. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (for asparagus). Coat the bottom of a wok (or a large pan if you don't have a wok) with olive oil and warm it with your burner on low heat. Slice the onion and add it to the wok, stirring until it's coated. Wash and slice mushrooms and add to wok. Add chopped garlic to taste (I like a lot). Add a splash of soy sauce and stir until ingredients are thoroughly mixed.
Wash asparagus and chop into bite-sized pieces, disposing of tough ends. Put into a pan and coat pieces with olive oil (and salt and pepper, if you like). Stick the pan in the oven.
If you're using bean curd/tofu (I buy a pre-seasoned, pre-fried canned variety) slice it into bite-sized pieces and add it to the wok. I don't recommend using plain white tofu.
Drain the bamboo and water chesnuts and add to wok. Dump in enough sesame ginger dressing to lightly coat all of the ingredients and add another splash of soy sauce. Mix everything together well.
Remove asparagus from oven and add to wok. Drain pasta and add to wok. Add more sesame ginger dressing--enough to coat pasta. Add more soy sauce if you like a saltier taste. Toss pasta and other ingredients until evenly mixed. Allow to cook for a few more minutes so pasta can absorb dressing.
Serve in a large bowl and garnish with sesame seeds.
This is a recipe I made up one night a few months ago when we were craving Chinese food. The only problem is, all of the Chinese takeout places we've tried around here are disgusting! So I improvised, using what I had sitting in the pantry. I made it again last night to see if I couldn't tweak the recipe a little bit more. It doesn't have the umami I'm shooting for, and I think it's because I didn't use any MSG--which is what makes most Americanized Chinese food so delicious. But, considering that I got all of my ingredients at the commissary on base, I'm pretty satisfied with the result. If I'd had it, I think mixing in a touch of nutritional yeast might have improved the overall taste.
One benefit of Jason being gone is that I can tinker in the kitchen without having to make a second dinner when the first doesn't suit his palate. He casts a dubious eye on some of my experiments in vegan cooking, so the more kinks I can work out before I put something in front of him, the better!