Spicy daikon radish stands in for rice paper wraps in this unique recipe. Thinly sliced daikon is stuffed with shiso (a Japanese herb that has a minty basil flavor) cucumber, avocado, sprouts, and mint. It is garnished with black sesame seeds and drizzled with a bright citrus sauce.
This Japanese inspired recipe is from Jean-Christian Jury’s latest culinary publication Vegan: The Cookbook. If you’re not vegan, don’t let the title detour you from this plant-based gold mine.
Jean-Christian Jury is a vegan and raw-food chef from Toulouse, France. He has traveled the world extensively visiting vegan chefs and gleaning new ideas. He is known for creating a new breed of delectable dishes based on plants.
Jean-Christian says the aim of Vegan: The Cookbook is to “surprise non-vegans with delicious vegan recipes, to show that meat wasn’t necessary for a delicious and satisfying meal. When food is fresh and brimming with flavor, it will leave you feeling sated.”
Whether you are vegan, vegetarian, or simply wanting to eat more plants, this 450 recipe cookbook is a bonanza of plant-based recipes inspired by 150 cuisines from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe and beyond.
Here are a few of the dishes we sampled at a media luncheon at Melissa’s Produce.
Quinoa Salad with Mango Dressing – page 91
Five Spice Stir-Fried Soba Noodles – page 292
Pomegranate and Semolina Cakes – page 322
Banana and Peanut Cream Cake – page 317
There are several ingredients in this recipe that you may not be familiar with if you don’t do a lot of Asian cooking. They’re relatively easy to find, but if you cannot find them, use suggested substitutions, and let your creativity flow.
Daikon Radish is a long, white radish used in Japanese as well as other Asian cooking and is milder than most radishes. They can be eaten raw, cooked or pickled. Sliced wafer thin, their pliable nature makes them wonderful “roll” material. To slice them, a mandoline works best, but you can use a vegetable peeler too.
Substitution: Jicama, which has the same color and texture as daikon though a sweeter taste, works here, but I try to find Daikon radishes at the farmer’s market or Asian stores because they really are so much better.
Shiso goes by many names, including Chinese basil and perilla. You will find shiso leaves used in various Asian cuisines and sold at ethnic markets or online.
Substitution: Lemon basil or Thai basil
Yuzu is a sour Japanese citrus fruit, used both for its sour juice and its aromatic rind. The yuzu (which is about the size of a tangerine) tastes like a cross between grapefruit and lime. Bottled yuzu juice can be found at specialty foods stores and Asian markets.
Substitution: Use 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice and 1/2 tablespoon fresh orange juice, or equal parts of Meyer lemon and grapefruit juice.
Galangal is also known as Thai ginger or Siamese ginger (because it resembles fresh ginger so much), but it really is its own ingredient. It has a sharp citrusy, earthy and almost piney flavor. It is commonly found in Thai, Indonesian, and other Asian cuisines.
Substitution: Ginger, however, has a much stronger flavor than galangal so it should be used judiciously.
- 1 tablespoon tamari or soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon grated galangal
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 large daikon radish, sliced thinly into 12 long slices
- 12 shiso leaves
- 1 ripe avocado, finely diced
- 1 cucumber, finely diced
- 1 tablespoon snow pea shoots, minced or mung bean sprouts
- 1 tablespoon chopped mint leaves
- 1 tablespoon radish sprouts
- 2 tablespoons yuzu juice
- black sesame seeds, to garnish
- In a bowl, whisk together the tamari, rice vinegar, galangal, and lemon juice and set aside.
- Lay out the daikon slices on a tray or work surface. Place 1 shiso leaf on each slice.
- Carefully mix the avocado, cucumber, "snow pea shoots, and mint together in a bowl. Stir in the lemon dressing. Divide the mixture equally among the daikon slices, positioning the mixture at one end of each length. Roll up each daikon slice tightly, rolling away from you. Transfer the rolls to a serving plate, garnish with the sprouts, and use a tablespoon to sprinkle the yuzu juice over the top
“At the root of it, vegan food is just food: vibrant, flavourful, fresh – making you feel good inside and out,” said Jury. “The recipes in this book are a celebration of plant vitality and variety. The possibilities are seemingly endless and delicious.”
I am excited to taste my way around the world with this passport of plant-based food.
…and then, she paused for thought.
Disclaimer: I was given a copy of Vegan: The Cookbook to experiment with. All opinions are my own. This post may contain Amazon affiliate links for your convenience, at no additional cost to you.