This summer has been a nonstop roller coaster for me, I can’t even make it through two weeks before I have to be on the road again. I’ve been splitting my time between the Bay and Utah, so it’s been quite an undertaking driving between the two so often. My favorite moments are when I get to sit down to a homemade meal because it feels like I have a semblance of normal, like I’m back in a routine again. Yesterday I completed another drive back to Utah, so today I was happy to sleep in, slap on some minimal makeup, make a run to the nearest grocery store, and spend the rest of the day indoors whipping up this colorful meal. That’s what I call a good day.
I adore a good stir fry, and this is my favorite combo of sweet, salty and spicy, with a beautiful mix of colors and textures. I love the bright orange-flavored sauce and spoiled myself with an extra-tender cut of beef to put it over the top. The star of this dish, though, is the rice blend. Just look how stunning it is! The pretty summer colors of the veggies just look that much better against the canvas this beautiful black rice blend creates. It’s Village Harvest’s Organic Antioxidant Blend with black rice, black lentils and black quinoa, and my whole household has become infatuated with it. But I have more than one reason for loving it.
Besides this blend being yummy, fluffy, and pretty to boot, I love the idea of it. See, I actually eat this kind of thing quite often, it’s very common in Korea to add a variety of grains and beans to rice to make it healthier. My mom calls it birthday rice. Having grown up poor farmers in post-war Korea, this kind of special rice was only enjoyed on their birthdays, hence the nickname. So I have a fond attachment to birthday rice, and these Village Harvest Organic Benefit Blends are so much more convenient and delicious than any blend I’ve created. Highly recommend the antioxidant blend I used for this dish, it’s fluffy, delish, and sooo pretty. Check out my full recipe below.
I was able to find Village Harvest at my local Raley’s and Safeway, and they carried all of the unique organic blends (Organic Ancient Grain Blend and Organic Protein Blend) EXCEPT this Organic Antioxidant Blend! Such a shame, but you know what you can do when that happens? Have you ever filled out a product request form? I found out about these glorious sheets of paper when I first moved to the Bay a few years ago. If your store doesn’t have something you want, fill out a product request form so that they will start carrying it! You can do that for these Village Harvest blends so that you can enjoy birthday rice more than just on your birthday! Let me link you to a form right HERE, you’re welcome. One of the cool things about Village Harvest is that they are committed to both environmental and social sustainability. One percent of their profits helps run programs that give back to the farmers and communities where they source their products, and they also donate 1% of their employees’ time to charitable causes and sustainability efforts. That to me is the cherry on top of Village Harvest’s delicious offerings.
So visit HERE to snag these yummy blends online and check out my recipe below. What favorite dish would you use these organic blends for??
Sweet + Spicy Orange Beef Bowl
- 1lb beef, sliced thin*
- 1/2 cup cornstarch
- 1 medium zucchini, sliced
- 1 medium yellow squash, sliced
- 1 cup matchstick carrots
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- zest of 1 orange
- 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp soy sauce
- 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 3 Tbsp sake
- 1 tsp ginger, grated
- 1-2 tsp crushed red pepper
- 2 tsp cornstarch
- salt + pepper
- 1 bag Village Harvest Organic Antioxidant Blend
- roasted sesame seeds (opt.)
- 3 green onions, chopped (opt.)
Cook Village Harvest Organic Antioxidant Blend according to instructions.
In a small bowl, whisk together the orange juice, zest, soy sauce, sugar, sake, ginger, crushed red pepper and 2 tsp cornstarch. Set aside.
Place your beef in a medium bowl and lightly season with salt and pepper. Then sprinkle 1/2 cup cornstarch over it and mix, making sure the beef is coated. Heat a large pan over med-high and coat with about 1 Tbsp of oil. Add the vegetables and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle lightly with salt. Remove to a clean dish. In the same pan, add another Tbsp of oil and brown the beef on both sides, about 1-2 minutes. Remove to a plate covered with paper towels. Lower heat to medium and add 1 Tbsp oil. Saute the garlic for just about 10 seconds until fragrant and then pour in your orange sauce. Leave sauce at a gentle boil until reduced by half. Stir the beef into the sauce and cook about 2 minutes until beef is cooked through. Then add the vegetables and stir to coat. Remove from heat and serve over Village Harvest Organic Antioxidant Blend. Garnish with sesame seeds and green onions (opt.) and enjoy!
*I used a New York Strip, which was tender and excellent. Also can recommend sirloin.