We love poke bowls, because they’re so easy to customise with your favourite flavours. This veggie version uses umami-rich Japanese tofu, Asian greens, carrot and cucumber, with a nutty sesame sauce to tie the whole thing together. (Psst, it’s pronounced po-kay, according to those in the know!)
Japanese tofu(ContainsWheat, SoyMay be presentPeanuts, Sesame)
sesame seeds(ContainsSesameMay be presentPeanuts, Gluten, Tree Nuts, Milk, Soya)
water (for the rice)
rice wine vinegar (for the onion)
water (for the onion)
sesame oil (or oil)(ContainsSesame)
rice wine vinegar (for the dressing)
In a medium saucepan, bring the water (for the rice) and the crumbled vegetable stock to the boil. Add the basmati rice, stir, cover with a lid and reduce the heat to low. Cook for 10 minutes, then remove from the heat and set aside, covered, until the rice is tender and the water is absorbed, 10 minutes. TIP: The rice will finish cooking in its own steam so don't peek!
While the rice is cooking, thinly slice the red onion (see ingredients list). In a small bowl, combine the rice wine vinegar (for the onion), the water (for the onion), a generous pinch of salt and a generous pinch of sugar. Scrunch the onion in your hands, then add to the pickling liquid and stir to coat. Set aside until just before serving. TIP: Toss the onion a few times during pickling to keep it submerged.
While the onion is pickling, cut the Japanese tofu into 2cm cubes. Thinly slice the carrot (unpeeled) into half-moons. Roughly chop the Asian greens. Thinly slice the cucumber into rounds.
Heat a medium frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add the sesame seeds and toast, tossing, until golden, 3-4 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl. Add the mayonnaise, sesame oil, soy sauce, sugar and rice wine vinegar (for the dressing). Mix well and set aside.
Return the frying pan to a medium-high heat with a drizzle of olive oil. Add the tofu and cook, tossing, until golden, 4 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Add a drizzle more olive oil to the pan, along with the carrot and cook until tender, 3 minutes. Add the Asian greens and cook until wilted, 2 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Drain the pickled onion. Divide the rice between bowls and top with the Japanese tofu, carrot, Asian greens and cucumber. Spoon over the sesame dressing and garnish with the pickled onion and crispy shallots.