I don’t know why this is exactly. But food in bowls always just seems way tastier to me than food served up in other ways. Maybe there is something satisfying and comforting about the act of wrapping your hands around a big, nourishing bowl of food. Or nestling a bowl in your lap as you settle into the couch for the night.
Or maybe I’m just a messy eater and I require the high sides that a bowl provides to be successful at mealtime.
Whatever the reason, I’m going to keep eating bowl food day in and day out. Everything from smoothie bowls to bowls of ice cream. It’s all good. But today, we’re focusing on these Mango Sushi Bowls with Quick-Pickled Carrots and Cucumbers.
Vegetarian sushi bowls are a staple around my house. They are so easy to make. Totally customizable. Completely filling. And they don’t require one to possess the same level of coordination and nimble fingers like homemade sushi rolls do (if you are a master at making sushi rolls TELL ME YOUR SECRETS!). I’ll often make up a big batch of rice on Sunday or Monday night, then use it all week long as a base for different combinations of toppings. Sometimes I’m lazy and I just toss together whatever is lingering in my crisper drawer. But this time, I was feeling a little fancy so I made up a batch of quick-pickled vegetables with Nakano Mango Seasoned Rice Vinegar.
Quick-pickled vegetables are exactly what they sound like: vegetables that have been pickled in a very short amount of time. In this case, all your need is one hour of chill time in your refrigerator to obtain some of that unmistakable “pucker”. I love how easy they are to make. And I find the acidity level to be more pleasant than traditionally made pickled vegetables. For this recipe, I pickled some carrot and cucumber ribbons. But I think zucchini ribbons or thinly sliced radishes would be great as well.
The Nakano Mango Seasoned Rice Vinegar has a hint of sweetness to it, which I played up even further by adding some fresh mango to these sushi bowls. I always love having a little something sweet in my savory dishes. The contrasting flavors make eating much more interesting.
Nakano Rice Vinegars contain no artificial ingredients or preservatives. So I can feel good about using them for pickling. And for splashing them on salads, grain bowls and whatever else I can imagine!
For the pickled vegetables:
- 1 large carrot trimmed and peeled into ribbons
- 1 large cucumber trimmed and peeled into ribbons
- 1 ¼ cups warm water
- 1 ¼ cups Nakano Mango Seasoned Rice Vinegar
- 1 tablespoon agave nectar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
For the sushi bowls:
- 2 cups brown rice
- 2 tablespoons Nakano Mango Seasoned Rice Vinegar
- 1 tablespoon tamari
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup cubed mango
- 1 cup shelled and cooked edamame
- 2 scallions white and light green parts thinly sliced
- ½ teaspoon sesame seeds
Make the quick-pickled vegetables:
- Divide the carrot and cucumber ribbons into two re-sealable containers (16 ounce mason jars work great for this). In a bowl, stir together the water, rice vinegar, agave nectar, salt and pepper. Pour this mixture over the vegetable ribbons, dividing it evenly between the two containers. Seal the containers and gently shake them a couple of times. Then transfer the containers to your refrigerator to chill for 1 hour. A longer refrigeration time is okay, too.
- Meanwhile, cook the brown rice according to the package instructions. In a small bowl, combine the rice vinegar, tamari and salt. Then, while the cooked rice is still slightly warm, drizzle this dressing over the rice, tossing with a fork to combine. Set aside.
Assemble the sushi bowls:
- Divide the rice evenly between 4 bowls. Top with some of the quick-pickled vegetables, mango, edamame and scallions. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve immediately.
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Disclosure: This recipe was created in connection with my appointment as a contributor to the Nakano Natural and Seasoned Rice Vinegar.