I live in the Lower mainland in beautiful British Columbia and I am always on the look out for new Vegan or Vegan friendly joints that will actually appeal to the Hubs and I and huge bonus marks if the Kid can eat there too. Here’s a secret, there sadly really aren’t that many. However, this one falls into the “doh!!” category because I have walked by and heard about a newer take out place in the Kitsilano area called The Noodlebox but had never bothered to go in. Last weekend I was fortunate enough to attend a fan-freaking-tastic yoga conference on Vancouver Island (Victoria Yoga Conference to be exact) and on one of our lunch breaks my friend suggested we just grab something from “The Noodlebox”. Of course, I had to ask, is it the same as the one in Kitsilano and she said yes. (Duh…). So off we went!
Sigh. It was amazing!!!! Veggie options galore! Add Tofu to anything!! Pick your spiciness level!! Noodle or rice?? White or Brown!? OMG!??! Why haven’t we eaten here before!??! They even had a kids menu!!!! I have to say that this is quite rare in Canada in any restaurant you actually want your child to eat in. They also offered Ocean Wise seafood and plenty of meat and egg add-ons for those who are so inclined. Plus the portions were HUGE. A plus when you’ve just completed two, one hour power yoga classes.
I picked the Spicy Peanut Noodle Box but added Tofu and got brown rice instead of noodles (they have Gluten Free options as well if that is an issue for diners). It was PACKED with tofu, veggies, spicy peanut sauce, crushed peanuts, chopped fresh herbs, some green onions and some sprouts. It was the perfect meal and I’m not going to lie, I freaking LOVE the old school Chinese food take out boxes. I’m cheesy like that.
I literally can’t wait to go back. And next time I’m taking the Hubs and Kid. They also have locations in Calgary and I wouldn’t be surprised to see them enter the East Coast market some time soon too. Keep an eye out people!!
Veggies and Tofu with Peanut Sauce
Ahhh peanuts. How I love you. Let me count the ways.
Dessert? Sauces? Garnish? Yes yes yes!!!
Another favorite of the hubs is my veggie stir-fry with peanut sauce. I have made this dish many times and each time the sauce is slightly different. This one you really need to play with and make your own. Here are the basics:
½ cup of natural/organic creamy unsalted peanut butter
2-3 Tbsp organic low sodium soy sauce (why organic you ask? I always buy organic non-GMO soy products whenever possible and yes, it’s not always possible. But if you can, you should. GMO foods are gross modified options or genetically modified organisms and it’s always better to eat food that hasn’t been a science project right??)
2-3 Tbsp sesame oil
1-2 cloves crushed garlic
½ cup rice wine vinegar and or lime juice. Use what you have handy, both are good.
Red pepper flakes or srirracha to taste.
Warm the peanut butter and stir everything else in. Yup. It’s THAT easy.
Keep playing with the sauce until you like the flavour. The viscosity should resemble loose pancake batter. I like to fry up my tofu (smoked is my favorite but any firm organic tofu is good!) in some coconut oil and then once it’s crispy, add in the veg! Whatever you like. I used carrots, bell peppers, snow peas, mushrooms and green onion as a garnish. To placate the hubs, I took out some prawns for him to toss into his. Sometimes he uses chopped chicken breast and preps it the same as I do the tofu. Once you get the right softness of the veg (we like ours slightly crunchy), toss in some sauce and Bob’s your uncle. The hubs decided that Soba noodles are best with this meal, but we have also had it with brown rice noodles and I’m sure any whole grain or hearty noodle would do.
Clearly this is one of those meals that leaves everybody happy. I however am happier when he leaves out the meat (tee hee) but that doesn’t really ever happen with this one. Can’t win’em all people!!
Garnish with toasted peanuts and a slice of lime if you are so inclined. Apparently the shrimp version goes well with beer.