The super bowl: Bill Granger's one-bowl meals
Our chef's rice-based dishes are delicious, comforting and simple to make
Maybe it's a comfort thing, or maybe it's because I've been so influenced by Asia (or maybe it's both), but I've always been a fan of one-bowl eating. I love the simplicity of a vessel that sits comfortably in one hand and a pair of chopsticks – or, if I'm being really lazy, a spoon. And using different varieties of rice as your base, there are so many winning flavour-and-texture combinations you can create; Asian tends to work best but go ahead and get creative. In fact, there's no reason why you couldn't have a different bowl every night of the week.
Bill Granger's restaurant, Granger & Co, is at 175 Westbourne Grove, London W11, tel: 020 7229 9111, grangerandco.com
Coconut chicken bowl
How often do we find ourselves wondering what we can do with chicken to liven it up? The addition of coconut rice, a zingy dressing, some crunch and a kick are a pretty good solution.
8 chicken thighs, boneless
1 tbsp light-flavoured oil
225g/7½oz long-grain white rice
400ml/14fl oz can coconut milk
½ white cabbage, shredded
1 red chilli, chopped
4 spring onions, chopped
Handful peanuts, roasted and chopped
For the dressing
4 tbsp light soy sauce
1 tbsp fish sauce
Juice 1 lime
¼ tsp sugar
Small bunch mint, chopped
Small bunch coriander, chopped
Heat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas6. Rub the chicken thighs with the oil and season with salt before placing on a baking tray. Cook for 30 minutes until golden and the skin is crisp. Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 15 minutes.
Wash the long-grain white rice then place into a pan with the coconut milk and just enough water to cover the rice. Cover and bring to the boil then reduce the heat and cook until tender and glossy from the oil in the coconut milk.
Remove the skin from the thighs. Shred the meat and skin, then tip the meat into a bowl with all the salad ingredients except for the peanuts. Whisk together the soy, fish sauce, lime juice and sugar then pour over the salad and toss together. Add herbs and toss again.
Divide the rice between bowls, top with chicken salad, peanuts and crispy skin, and serve.
Okinawan taco rice
This unusual Tex-Mex-style bowl is a throwback to the days when Okinawa was home to an American military base. I also encountered stir-fried Spam when I visited the island. I think I can safely say I won't be trying that one at home.
225g/7½oz sushi rice or short-grain white rice
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp hot chilli powder
1 tsp smoked paprika
2 tbsp light-flavoured oil
2 x 200g/7oz rib-eye steaks
1 onion, sliced
2 garlic cloves, chopped
400g/13oz can chopped tomatoes
¼ tsp sugar
2 tbsp rice-wine vinegar
2 tbsp soy sauce
Red Leicester cheese, grated
Cook the rice according to the packet instructions – you want it to be slightly sticky. Meanwhile, mix the cumin, chilli and paprika together. Rub a little oil on to the steaks then massage half the spices into the meat and set aside for a few minutes. Heat a large frying pan to hot, add a drizzle of oil then cook the steaks on each side for 2 minutes, or until cooked to your liking. Remove from the pan and allow to rest.
Add the remaining oil to the pan with the rest of the spices, the onion and the garlic and cook until the onion is softening. Tip in the tomatoes, sugar, vinegar and soy and cook for 5 minutes until thickened slightly but still saucy.
Thinly slice the steaks and stir any juices into the sauce. Divide the rice between bowls, spoon on some sauce then pile on slices of steak, a heap of avocado, sour cream, tomatoes and cheese.
A more practical version of the authentic salmon chirashi you get in sushi restaurants that means you don't have to trawl the shops for sashimi-grade fish. I like to think this is just as delectable.
225g/7½oz short-grain brown rice
2cm piece ginger, chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
3 tbsp tamari or soy sauce
1 tbsp mirin
500g/1lb piece salmon fillet
2 pak choi, halved and broken into leaves
½ cucumber, chopped
4 spring onions, sliced
Toasted sesame seeds
Sesame oil, to drizzle
Cook the rice according to the packet instructions, or until just tender. Mix the ginger, garlic, tamari and mirin in a bowl, add the salmon then allow to stand for 15 minutes. Remove the salmon from the bowl and drain.
Heat a large, non-stick pan, add a drop of light-flavoured oil then the salmon skin-side down and cook for 3 minutes, or until crisp. Flip over the salmon and cook for a further 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Pour the marinade into the pan, add the pak choi, and cook until tender.
Divide the rice between 4 bowls and spoon over the sauce and pak choi. Flake the salmon into large chunks and add to the bowl along with the cucumber and spring onions. Serve with some pickled ginger, sesame seeds and a drizzle of sesame oil.
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