Lunch options on ski trips “back in the old days” as my kids like to tease, were usually some sort of cellophane wrapped sandwich, a burger, a bowl of chili or a hot dog, washed down with a soda or a cup of hot chocolate. For a long time in my twenties, I dated someone who made sandwiches at home that we wrapped and put in our jackets to eat when hunger struck. They were smooshed but tasty! I think my fondest ski memory, as far as food is concerned anyway, are the rides home with my mother from one of the ski 93 mountains when we should share a chocolate bar. We both loved chocolate and since we did not have many sweets in our house growing up, my father’s profession as a dentist forbidding it, this felt extra special for the two of us.
This past Christmas, we traveled west to Park City and had a glorious 6 days of skiing which is saying a lot for this gal who is not a natural on the slopes. Let’s just say you are definitely waiting for me at the bottom! Like so many other things that have vanished from “the old days”, so too have boring, brown lunch options at many ski resorts.
By day 3, we had located the place that would become our lunch spot for the rest of our trip. Mid Mountain lodge served the best options for our diversitarian family. Salads, bowls, soups and sandwiches featuring meats from its rotisserie were all on offer. If you visit, it’s the spot for lunch. I ordered the Mid Mountain Superfood bowl, filled with a mixture of farro, brown rice and quinoa, swiss chard, cabbage, dried cherries and pistachios. It was dressed with an orange vinaigrette and it was fantastic, filling and so healthy that it left me just a teensy remorseful I hadn’t added some fries to my tray for all the morning’s hard work.
What is it about other people’s food always looking better? My husband and daughter ordered the Mid Mountain Buddha Bowl twice. So what is a buddha bowl? Evidently, bowls that are over filled with ingredients such that they take on the shape of a large tummy are referred to as buddha bowls (urban dictionary). Theirs was filled with brown rice and a mixture of roasted brussels sprouts, broccoli and cauliflower, topped with a peanut miso dressing and some crispy kale. Yum.
Back at home, I wanted to recreate this bowl which, truth be told, is all about the Peanut Miso Dressing. The vegetables and even the grains are interchangeable depending on what you favor. And if you are not eating grains, you could use mixed greens as the base for the roasted vegetables and call it a day. If you want to make it a complete meal with some protein, you could add some grilled chicken, shrimp, tofu or some roasted chickpeas, all of which would pair nicely with the dressing. I’ve also added half an avocado for a really filling meal.
I tested the recipe on my family with the same ingredients used at the Mid Mountain lodge, mixing up a dressing based on a few recipes I saw online. The key to the dressing is the white miso which if you’ve never used is a big flavor enhancer. Think salt and then some. It’s the perfect foil to the sweeter peanut butter. Rice vinegar, ginger paste (from a tube) and sriracha give the dressing a little bite while a touch of sesame oil provides some depth. The whole mixture is thinned out with some warm water to a pourable consistency.
The recipe makes more dressing than you may need for 4 bowls, but you can dip some vegetables in it or use it for a dip for fresh rolls. If it sits in your fridge, it may thicken up so you just need to add a splash of warm water and whisk to restore it to a pourable state.
For today’s post, I decided to mix up the vegetables to add some more vibrant colors to the dish and remind us that brighter food days are just ahead of us! I love the combination of the hearty beets and squash with the broccoli and cauliflower. Roasted red onions are my personal favorite. If you don’t care for onions, skip them. And please feel free to mix up the vegetables with whatever you favor. Brussels sprouts, asparagus, sweet potatoes, or mushrooms could all work nicely here.
My family loves to eat out of bowls. In fact, these bowls are the most used dinnerware in my kitchen. I highly recommend them, although I didn’t use them for the photo because they are large and a bit more difficult to photograph in their entirety!
I decided to forego the clever title of Buddha Bowl for this recipe and am calling it exactly what it is. I mean, I grew up in the “old days” after all and my blog is not about SEO so take that internet!
Will you make this dish? I hope you do and would love to hear your thoughts…