Quinoa pickle bowl

After my sushi party I had a couple of special circumstances to address. The first was that I was totally wiped out from the party, both from the frenzied prep and the epic experience itself. The other was that I had a ton of leftovers, but not the kind that lend themselves to easy munching. The sushi rice had disappeared before the party even ended, so afterwards I found myself with a fridge full of Japanese side salads and sushi fillings. Mainly pickles.

Some of the stuff that ended up in bowls in my fridge:
Carrots simmered in sake and mirin
Shitake mushrooms simmered in soy sauce and Shaoxing cooking wine
Takuan (pickled daikon radish)
Japanese cucumber pickles
Gobo (pickled burdock root)
Steamed sweet potato
Shiso leaf
Ground toasted sesame seeds
Pickled ginger
Cucumber sunomono (thinly sliced cucumbers in rice vinegar)
Goma ae (cooked spinach with sesame seeds)
Mung bean sprout salad

Situation B turned out the be the perfect solution to Situation A. For days after the party, I’d make a big batch of quinoa in my rice maker and then, when it was done, throw in a ton of chopped sushi fillings, pickles, and giant spoonfuls of cucumber, spinach, and bean sprout salads. The dressings from the salads served as sauce for the quinoa, the sweet, sour and salty flavors from the pickles brought the whole dish to life, and the colors were phenomenal. Plus shiso makes everything taste extra-special and magical, to my taste buds at least.

So, not so much a recipe as a serving suggestion/solution for what to do after a giant sushi party leaves your fridge full of Japanese pickles. Quinoa pickle bowl was so good and kept my mouth so interested that I basically lived off of it for days!