Move over, Cactus Club.

Cactus Club's teriyaki rice bowlIf you know me, you would know that I hate chain restauurants with a passion. Places like Cactus Club, Earls, Joey’s, Browns Social House, etc. Just very unimaginative food. Consistent, yes, but the food has never been outstanding (atleast since my highschool days). Cactus Club is probably the best out of the bunch, in my opinion, and yes, I do get trapped into going there sometimes out of convenience, friends’ choice, and its senstivity-free menu.

Now, if there is one dish that I have to choose out of the entire menu at Cactus that is the bomb dot com, it would be their teriyaki rice bowl. The good news is that I never have to go to a Cactus Club ever again because I just made that shit right in the comfort of my own home.

Teriyaki bowls are so lame — I’ll admit it. It’s like the whitest Japanese food you can get…if you even consider it “Japanese”. Cactus Club’s features chicken, vegetables, braised red cabbage and your choice of white or brown rice. It’s pretty standard to say the least. My friend who’s a manager at Cactus actually gave me a tip which was to have the vegetables steamed, brown rice and tofu instead of chicken and that’s the only way I have it nowadays. I mean, it’s good on it’s own but my way is better. Oh, and don’t forget to ask for extra spicy yogurt sauce. Oh, that SAUCE.

There’s just something that is so awesome about Cactus Club’s teriyaki rice bowl — and it’s the spicy yogurt sauce. The spicy yogurt sauce practically MAKES the dish. It’s so amazing that I’ve heard that they have actually started selling a bottled sauce of it now! But look no further: you can make it at home for less than $10. Yup.

So I’ve re-created this dish to kind of replicate my favourite dish at Cactus — and it was incredibly simple! All you need to do is cook your rice, steam your  vegetables, make the teriyaki sauce and mix your yogurt sauce. It may sound like a lot of work but really, all it comes down to is just assembly. You can do this in 30 minutes while the rice is cooking, while the veggies are steaming… It’s not that difficult at all.

Also, I’d be super curious to try a completely RAW version of this. I think it would be pretty heavenly. Anyone wanna  report back to me on that!?

Anyways, ou’ll never go to Cactus Club again after this. You can thank me later.
Cactus Club's teriyaki rice bowl Cactus Club's teriyaki rice bowlCactus Club’s teriyaki rice bowl

What you’ll need:
– 1 head broccoli, stems and florets, chopped
– 2 medium carrots, peeled and julienned
– 2 stalks celery, sliced diagonally
– 1 cup frozen green peas, thawed
– 2 cups braised red cabbage

Teriyaki sauce (adapted from Food Network)
– 1/2 cup soy sauce
– 1/4 cup water
– 2 tbsp sweet rice wine
– 1 tbsp brown sugar
– 2 cloves garlic, minced
– 4 tsps ginger, grated
– 1 tsp black pepper

Spicy yogurt sauce
– 1 cup Greek yogurt
– 1/3 cup ranch dressing
– 2 tsps cayenne pepper
– 1/2 tsp black pepper
– 1 tsp Sriracha

– 2 cups your choice of rice

What you’ll need to do:
1. Cook your choice of rice in a rice cooker.
2. Meanwhile, throw all the vegetables (except the braised red cabbage) into a medium saucepan with 1/4 cup water, cover and steam over medium heat until cooked but crunchy, about 5-7 minutes.
3. In a small saucepan, combine all the ingredients for the teriyaki sauce and heat over medium heat. Keep on eye on it so it doesn’t burn. Stir. It should thicken by 10 minutes.
4. Combine all the ingredients for the spicy yogurt spicy in a small bowl. Set aside.
5. When ready, assemble rice into bowls, top with steamed vegetables, warmed braised red cabbage, teriyaki sauce, and finally, with the spicy yogurt sauce. Makes 4 servings.


One thought on “Move over, Cactus Club.

  1. If you like it a bit spicier at the restaurant sub out the Teriyaki sauce for the Szechuan sauce and add the Sereno peppers and onions from the Szechuan beans.

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