Ditch The Plate – Bring On The Bowls

Whether you're planning easy lunches for the week or throwing together an assortment of tasty ingredients for dinner, try using bowls for a convenient, fun option.

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April 21, 2017 3 min read

Sometimes a bowl is just the better plating choice.
When you’re working toward a culinary arts certificate online, you spend a lot of time perfectly arranging food on a plate. Sometimes, though, you’re better off getting rid of the plate altogether and crafting a meal in a bowl. Whether you’re planning easy lunches for the week or throwing together an assortment of tasty ingredients for dinner, use bowls for a convenient, fun option.

Try these three recipes and you’ll soon see that bowls are full of possibilities.

1. Sweet and sour deliciousness

“Bowls are full of possibilities.”

It’s a simple, tasty choice if you have a slow-cooker on hand. First, coat skinless chicken thighs in cornstarch and brown them in canola oil over medium-high heat, allowing about three minutes on either side.

Transfer the chicken into the slow-cooker. Chop the white parts of two green onions and combine them with rice vinegar, ketchup, honey, soy sauce, garlic, ginger and salt. Add the sauce to the chicken before covering and cooking on high for three hours.

When the chicken becomes tender, take the thighs out of the slow cooker and remove the bones. Cook rice while mixing cabbage and carrot coleslaw with radishes, sesame oil and rice vinegar. Place the rice, chicken and coleslaw mixture in bowls, topping with the sauce from the slow-cooker and green onion.

2. Bring out the flavor in cod

For a bowl that takes a simple piece of fish to a new level, try the directions for cod with a tomato cream sauce from Eating Well. Begin by seasoning pieces of fish with thyme, salt and pepper. Pour extra-virgin olive oil into a skillet and set over medium heat.

Saute a shallot and minced garlic with thyme for about a minute. Then, add the fish, along with white wine and canned, diced tomatoes. When the skillet reaches a simmer, cover and cook for up to six minutes. Set aside the cooked fish.

Use a whisk to combine heavy cream and cornstarch. Pour the mixture into the pan with more thyme and salt to cook for a minute. Assemble the bowls by placing the cod on a bed of rice or farro and with the sauce.

Sweet potatoes can be the start of a fantastic veggie bowl.Sweet potatoes can be the start of a fantastic veggie bowl.

3. Pack in the veggies

If you prefer your bowl without any meat or fish, Minimalist Baker has a great idea for you. This Buddha bowl is loaded with sweet potatoes, chickpeas, veggies and a maple-tahini sauce. Begin by placing halved sweet potatoes and wedges of onion on a baking sheet with a drizzle of oil.

Set the baking sheet in an oven set to 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 10 minutes. Turn over the potatoes and add broccolini to the sheet with oil, salt and pepper. Return to the oven for another eight to 10 minutes before throwing on seasoned kale as well and roasting another four or five minutes.

While the vegetables are cooking, rinse and dry chickpeas before tossing them in cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, oregano, turmeric, salt and pepper. Saute the chickpeas in oil over medium heat until they brown. Whisk together tahini, maple syrup and lemon juice, and add warm water until the sauce reaches the right consistency for easy pouring.

Cut the sweet potatoes into small chunks and place the roasted vegetables in bowls. Throw in the chickpeas and finish with the tahini sauce.

Bowls can bring variety into the repertoire of a culinary academy student. Explore the possibilities of planning meals ahead and creating dishes that can be easily enjoyed on-the-go. You may find that skipping the plate opens up some exciting new ideas for your cooking.

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