Healthy-Ass January #3: Egg Roll in a Bowl (TJ’s Remix) — Hungry Girl Clean & Hungry OBSESSED!
In some ways, it feels like a no-brainer.
I’ve got a blog where I’m cooking through my cookbook collection.
I’m doing a month of healthy recipes.
I’ve been working for a company that puts out cookbooks of healthy recipes for over a decade.
Of course I’d eventually hit a Hungry Girl book.
It seems like a no-brainer, but it literally only occurred to me last week. How’s that for no brain?
“But Dana, you’re saying that you haven’t had anything from this cookbook?!” I am in no way saying that; I taste-tested most of the recipes at some point, but I am saying that I haven’t actually cooked from it myself. Let’s move forward…
The Assignment: Egg Roll in a Bowl from Hungry Girl Clean & Hungry OBSESSED!: All-Natural Recipes for the Foods You Can’t Live Without by Lisa Lillien
When it comes to Hungry Girl cookbooks, I’m very well versed, having worked for the company since 2008. And every time one of the books comes out, basically all of us gush about how it’s the best one yet — and that’s how things should be, right? Who wants to churn out work and have it be like, “Eh, IDK, I feel like we’re going downhill.” No! Uphill always! So when this book finally debuted in 2018, I had no problem saying that it was definitely my favorite HG book yet. (P.S. New book is dropping soon; if you want all that sweet Hungry Girl info, sign up for the daily emails.)
It’s also the book that’s the most in line with the way I like to eat most of the time. Healthy ingredients put together in a way that’s inspired by junk food, but is way better for me? HELLO, sign me up! This book contains some of my very favorite HG recipes of all time. So when I energetically hit a wall and I started getting cranky about needing to make dinner and didn’t really want to put in a lot of effort, I knew what I wanted to make…
The Recipe (directly from the book, which you should buy):
Things to Note About the Recipe:
This recipe is gloriously easy, ridiculously tasty, and stupid healthy. It’s basically just a stir-fry, but it happens to taste like the inside of an egg roll, which rocks. And for anyone who comes at me like, “But it’s mostly just cabbage,” I say to you HOW DARE YOU, CABBAGE IS MAGIC.
(Does anyone else have a ferocious love of cabbage? It’s not just me, is it?)
Now, before you start looking at my picture above, evaluating the ingredients I clearly used and/or did not use, you must know this: The grocery store I stopped at on my way home was Trader Joe’s.
Trader Joe’s is great for a lot of things, y’all. Cheese and charcuterie, the best sauces and condiments around, chocolate truffles that make you temporarily forget the evils of the world… all of that stuff. But anyone who’s tried to make TJ’s their only stop knows that it comes with some compromises. One does not simply walk into a Trader Joe’s and expect them to have every ingredient on their list. There are going to be some notable omissions.
Bean sprouts? Nope.
Water chestnuts? Nuh-uh.
BUT IT’S COOL. It’s cool because I didn’t want to make another stop and I needed a new jar of their delicious Valencia peanut butter, so it was Joe’s way or no way.
Instead of scallions, I grabbed chives; instead of bean sprouts, I grabbed snow peas; I left out the water chestnuts entirely because they’re really more of a textural thing and, sure, I could have actually gone with jicama to see how that would do for adding a bit of vegetal crunch, but that’s immaterial right now.
Also, I used TJ’s jarred chopped garlic. I had whole garlic cloves on hand, but I didn’t want to cut them because LAZY. Trader Joe and this recipe both support my laziness, and I appreciate that. Additionally, I didn’t measure my garlic. And in addition to the ground ginger, I threw in some squeezable crushed ginger I had chillin’ in the fridge.
I cannot overstate how easy this dish is to make. You don’t even have to chop anything if you tear up your scallions/chives with your hands like a savage (read: me). Did I slightly overcook the slaw mix? Yeah, but it’s all good, because cabbage tastes best when it’s a little charred! (WHY IS CABBAGE SO GOOD??) Thirty minutes after I walked in the door, this dish was on the table, ready to eat, and I wasn’t even being that efficient.
How did it taste?
Frickin’ great. It’s good without the tweaks like I’ve had it before, and it’s good with the modifications. It’s a very fast & forgiving recipe. That’s how I like ’em: fast & forgiving. (Wait, what?…)
Would I make this again?
HELLS YES. I’m annoyed at myself for forgetting about this recipe and not making it sooner.
Do I recommend this book?
I totally do, and not even just because I worked on it. This is a really great book of healthy and delicious recipes that you can make on just a random weeknight.
What’s the next recipe I want to make from this book?
OOOH, the Caramelized Onion Chickpea Burgers, which was another favorite of mine from the test-phase of this book. They’re full of cheddar and those slow-cooked onions, and they kinda remind me of my favorite cheese at Trader Joe’s, the cheddar with caramelized onions. OH SHIT, we just went full circle on TJ’s, so let’s wrap it up!
We’re just about to the end of this Healthy-Ass January! What am I gonna make next week? I honestly don’t know. Better check back and seeeee…