Last week I began my coursework for Rouxbe Online Cooking School’s Plant-Based Professional Certification Course. It’s absolutely thrilling to learn from the best in the industry, including Chef Chad Sarno of Crazy, Sexy Kitchen by Kris Carr fame who also served as the Culinary Educator for Whole Foods and Chef Dr. Ken Rubin who is renowned chef educator and food anthropologist. I already feel like I’ve gained so much, and it’s only been a little over a week and a half!
Truth be told, I was a little hesitant about an online cooking course until I did my research into the instructors and the platform Rouxbe uses for eLearning. The set up is incredibly efficient and well-organized with a refined, sleek design that allows you to learn quickly and in-depth about everything from how to properly boil, parboil, blanch, and sweat veggies, to how to create your own pasta or gluten-free menu. I love that they provide not only hard-to-find articles and incredibly detailed instructional videos, but also ample time and space to interact with instructors, fellow students, and professional industry heavyweights who do live events with presentations and a thorough Q&A.
Of course, there’s also a lot of cooking! Our very first assignment was to create our personal “Go-to Dish” in which we provide images of its set-up, process, and final result. Following that we created a Avocado, Kale, and Radish salad in which we learned how fats and acids can affect cruciferous vegetables. Most recently, we did an entire “Kitchen Re-Set” that had us clean out and organize our fridge and pantry; something that was super cool to do. I can’t wait to post about it later this week!
For my go-to dish, I made my Spicy Summer Rolls which I make at least once a week with variations; in fact, this is probably my most-requested recipe from friends and family that follow me on Instagram. Minus the chopping of the veggies, this recipe probably takes me about 3 minutes to put together. How’s that for quick and easy!
All in all, I am super excited about the path ahead and can’t rave enough about Rouxbe’s Plant-Based Cooking Course. I highly recommend checking out their Free Trial (which includes all manner of cooking, not just plant-based), if you’re interested.
Also I’d love to see pictures of what you’re cooking up that’s plant-based, whether it’s from my site or not. Use the hashtag #spiritplate on Instagram to show me what you’ve made!
Happy Memorial Day to all my U.S. folks – have a wonderful weekend and happy cooking!
- 4 sheets rice paper
- 1-2 cups baby super greens OR 4 large swiss chard/spinach leaves
- 1/4 cup shredded carrots
- 1/4 cup shredded red cabbage
- 1/2 cup finely sliced cucumber
- 1/2 cup finely sliced capsicum or bell pepper
- 1/2 cup halved cherry tomatoes
- 1/2 avocado
- 1 tsp fresh ginger, finely chopped
- 1/2 tsp black sesame seeds
- 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/4 lime
- 1 Tbsp coconut aminos, liquid aminos OR soy sauce
- hot sauce of choice, to taste
- Place one rice paper sheet on a wide flat plate. Fill plate with hot water, allowing it to flow over and under the paper, which will immediately begin to soften.
- Gently massage and move the rice paper around in the water, careful not to cause any wrinkles or folds.
- Once paper is fully softened and pliable, drain all the water by carefully tilting the plate whilst anchoring the paper with your thumbs. The paper wrap is now ready to fill.
- Working quickly, layer the next six ingredients onto the paper, about halfway between the center and the edge closest to you. Place the leafy greens down first and everything else on top. (You can pack in as much or as little filling as you'd like for a thicker or thinner roll.)
- Sprinkle some ginger, red pepper, and sesame seeds on top with a squeeze of lime. Place a few leafy greens on top to cover your fillings. This will ensure a smooth surface for your roll and will prevent the harder incredients like the carrots from poking out of the paper and creating holes.
- Roll the wrap up burrito-style, folding the edge closest to you up over the filling, then folding in the left and right ends, and finally rolling the whole thing tightly away from you. It is essential that you roll the paper as tight as possible to ensure a sturdy roll that won't fall apart when you take a bite.
- Repeat all previous steps with the next three sheets of rice paper.
- Mix together aminos/soy sauce with hot sauce in a small dipping bowl.
- Enjoy your rolls chilled, dipping them in the spicy sauce!
- You can replace any or all of the filling ingredients with your choice of veggies. I recommend that the first layer be soft greens to create a roll with a smooth surface, and ensure no ingredients poke out of it and create holes. I also love the avocado for added creaminess.
- I've tried this roll Tex-Mex style with beans and salsa as well as Mediterranean style with hummus and olives - they are all awesome, though this is by far my favorite version.
- Have all your ingredients ready to go. If you don't work fast enough, the rice paper will begin to dry out and go very tacky and sticky, ripping when you attempt to roll it.
- Add a teaspoon of nut or seed butter to your dipping sauce for a twist!