While I don’t remember the first time I ever had a Whole Bowl, I can perfectly remember the day I learned how to make Tali Sauce. It was a summer evening and I had a craving. Food carts were nearing closing time as I sat at my kitchen table on the verge of becoming hangry. So I did what any child of the Internet would do: I turned to Google.
Call it what you will: Tali Sauce, Northwest Sauce, Yum Sauce… If you’re from Portland you’ve probably had one of its many variations, or something close enough. And in all its myriad forms, surely someone, somewhere has tried to recreate this sauce, right?
I’ve already blogged about how I like to fry tofu, which is basically coated in cornstarch and fried in a small amount of oil. Flavoring it with buffalo wing sauce is as easy as turning the heat on low and pouring sauce over to coat.
What I (surprisingly) haven’t blogged about is the side dish I always eat with it: coconut rice with avocado and lime. If I don’t have any rice in the house, I don’t have buffalo wing tofu. I don’t even mention either one on their own. It’s always, “Buffalo wing tofu with coconut rice and avocado.” Always.
Earlier this summer I took advantage of my local Asian market and taught myself how to make sushi. I made a big event of it, having friends over, laying out the fixins and letting everyone learn how to roll and cut it themselves.
I have always been intimidated by sushi in the kitchen, but after learning how to make it, it seems silly. Making simple vegetarian maki is incredibly easy, though a bit time consuming. It also makes a lot, so it’s not something I really see myself doing on casual dinner nights – best save this one for dinner parties and the like.
I also learned how to make Vietnamese fresh spring rolls, which is beyond easy. I’ll tell you how to make both, starting with the sushi.