Tuesday, August 2, 2011

"Shrimp" Stirfry and The Fubonn Experience

I know, I know. These faux shrimp also strike me as incredibly strange. But lets be honest: shrimp are kind of weird to begin with so making a meatless, similarly fetus-shaped alternative, isn't really that weird.

Plus they taste pretty darn good. I was concerned that they would be chewy and have that fake seafood/fishfood flavor, but really they were pretty mild and had a nice texture. And being that they have 4 grams of fiber, 7 grams of protein and only 112 calories in a serving, I am generally pleased with this meatless stir fry alternative.

A close up of the Faux Shrimpy
So what inspired this shrimpless shrimp stirfry?

The Willamette Week.

I absolutely love Portland's local papers and try to pick up the Willamette Week on a regular basis now that I am back in Portland for good.

This week, an ad caught my eye. Looked like this:

I had never ever heard of this Fubonn place! How could that be?? I immediately googled it and discovered why.

It's out on SE 82nd (a road that I have been on maybe 3-4 times in my life and that I virtually have no reason to go to).

I was kind of bummed because I didn't really feel like driving all the way out there just to go shopping so I made a mental note to stop by the next time I was even remotely in that area.

And then, what do you know! Not three days later Colin convinced me to drop him off at a bachelor party in the classy neck of the woods that is SE 82nd st and I found myself at Fubonn's front door!

This place is insanity. It's by far the largest Asian market I have EVER been to. They have the BIG bottles of Sriracha for $2.18 and a produce section that beats Whole Foods in size and variety.

If my heaven were Asian, it would look like Fubonn.

I sniffed out the "meatless" section and was shocked and awed by what I found.

Ummm...excuse me?

All this stuff is VEGAN?!

I really didn't even know where to begin. It took  me a while to pick out the products I wanted to try because even though Fubonn has the single largest collection of meat-resembling non-meat products, the whole "trying to be meat" and "overly processed soy/gluten faux meats" are not really my thing.

But it was still interesting nonetheless and I left with a couple really cool things to try.

Namely, the shrimp, some black rice pasta (looks like licorice), some spicy sunflower seeds and some veggie stuffed dim sum buns.

I didn't buy these:
Dehydrated "Vege Duck" (Imitation Poultry).

Again, not really my thing. But still amazing that so many alternatives exist! The store was also so clean, bright and well laid out. I spent close to an hour just wandering, reading ingredients and exploring aisle after aisle of products I couldn't have dreamed up if I tried.

Upon checking out I naturally also had to buy some rice paper candy.

Needless to say I was very satisfied with my Fubonn experience and even more satisfied with the inspiration for my resulting "Shrimp" Stirfy! Making a guest appearance in this stir fry are kelp noodles which I have been wanting to try for a while and which you should definitely check out if you haven't already!

They are gluten free, fat free, vegan and only 6 calories per serving. Yes, that is not a typo. I said 6 calories. 3 servings per bag.

Shrimpless Shrimp Stirfry
  • 1 package faux shrimp (in the freezer aisle)
  • 1 package kelp noodles
  • 1/2 sweet walla walla onion
  • 1 tsp grapeseed or other veggie oil
  • 1 large head broccoli, chopped
  • 1 large bunch of chard (or bok choy or other green), chopped
  • 1 large handful of basil, chiffonaded 
  • 1 tsp Trader Joe's all purpose seasoning (or a mixture of salt, pepper, onion, garlic, paprika, chili pepper etc...)
For the sauce:
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp veggie broth
  • 2 tbsp Braggs or soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp creamy peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp sriracha
Heat your oil over medium heat and add onion. Saute for about 3-4 minutes (or until beginning to brown) and then add the shrimpies, broccoli and kelp noodles. Saute for another 3-4 minutes and then add the remainder of the ingredients, including spices.

In a small sauce pan over medium heat, whisk together your sauce ingredients until smooth and evenly combined (the heat will help with this).

Add the sauce to your stir fry and toss until all veggies are evenly covered.

Put the lid on your pan, reduce heat to medium low and allow ingredients to steam for about 6-7 additional miutes.

Transfer stir fry to a bowl and enjoy this flavorful, unique and healthy vegan meal!

Live long and prosper! Asain mega-store style.

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