Kate Gibbs

Herbivore heaven – ginger mushroom spring rolls, and soba noodles with eggplant.
Herbivore heaven … ginger mushroom spring rolls and soba noodles with eggplant. Photo: Katie Quinn Davies

GINGER MUSHROOM SPRING ROLLS

These fresh spring rolls can proudly stand up to their meaty competitors.

4 tbsp grated ginger

6 spring onions, finely sliced

3 tbsp rice bran or peanut oil

¼ cup soy sauce

1 small chilli, finely chopped

1 clove garlic, chopped

1 tbsp brown sugar

340g firm tofu

250g mixed mushrooms such as enoki, oyster and shimeji

12 dried rice paper wrappers, softened in lukewarm water

¼ cup coriander leaves

For ginger paste, sauté half the ginger and ¾ of spring onions in 2 tbsp oil until soft, set aside. In a bowl, combine remaining ginger, soy sauce, chilli, garlic and sugar. Use to coat tofu and mushrooms and marinate ½ hour. Pan-fry tofu in remaining oil over medium heat, until golden, then slice into 3cm x 2cm pieces, set aside. Fry mushrooms in the same pan, until soft. To assemble rolls, take one wrapper, smear a line of ginger paste in the centre, top with 2 pieces tofu and mushrooms, a few coriander leaves and sliced spring onions. Fold over bottom of wrapper, then sides. Repeat with remaining wrappers.

 

SOBA NOODLES WITH EGGPLANT

Quick to make and exotic in flavour, soba noodles can be a centrepiece to a meal.

Cook dried soba noodles (180g) according to packet instructions. Drain, rinse with cold water and drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil, set aside.

To make dressing, combine 1/3 cup rice wine vinegar and 2 tbsp brown sugar in a saucepan over medium heat, cook until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat, stir in 1 large garlic clove, finely chopped, ½ tsp wasabi paste, 1 tsp sesame oil. Cool, add juice and zest of 1 lime. Meanwhile, shallow-fry 3 Japanese eggplant cut into 3cm-long batons in ¼ cup rice bran oil, until tender. Steam 1½ cups edamame soy beans according to packet instructions, shell. Toss everything together, drizzle over dressing. Sprinkle over toasted sesame seeds to serve.

 

THE PERFECT PINOT GRIS
Sommelier Laiana Ryan

Pinot gris is the chameleon varietal of the wine world. Its versatility allows it to be enjoyed with a variety of dishes, including vegetarian, or simply on its own.

2012 Wither Hills, Marlborough, New Zealand ($17)
An abundance of ripe pear, almost as if you were walking through the orchard. A dry style with great length and a balanced, oily texture.

2012 Mount Majura, Canberra District ($25)
Mount Majura focuses on single varietal wines that are expressive of their vineyard and the Canberra region. A lighter style of pinot gris that sings of springtime. Pear tarte tatin and white peach aromas finish with refreshing minerality.

2010 Moorilla Muse, Tasmania ($35)
Moorilla estate is a gravity-forced winery with an ethos towards organic and biodynamic practices. A funky nose is due to partial wild ferment, but meadow honey and vanilla shine through with a little time in the glass.