About This Blog

I like food. A lot. In this blog, I will divulge all my delicious recipes, giving you a full list of ingredients, step-by-step instructions, and notes to help you successfully make the dish. Feel free to try these at home, and let me know how it went in the comments for the dish! If you have any questions, I will answer them as quickly as possible. If you use my recipe and discuss it on your site, please link back to this blog. Happy eating!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Almond Quinoa with Kale, Sweet Potatoes, Mushrooms

Let me start off by saying that this dish is INSANE. There's so much fabulous flavour happening here, that it's impossible to care that it's vegetarian. Plus, you'll be full by the time you finish a bowl this size, so there's no room for meat.
Kind of off topic, but can I just say that I really truly hate labeling people based on what they eat and then judging their character based on that classification? Like, meat eaters so often assume that vegetarians or vegans are crazy for not eating meat, or drinking milk or whatever, or that they're malnourished, because meat eaters cannot fathom obtaining protein from non-meat sources, or that they're "bleeding heart liberals," whatever that means.
And on the flip side, vegans and vegetarians are prone to thinking that meat eaters are cruel horrible who would murder every animal on earth for food if they could. Somehow, meat eaters are less moral for eating something that used to have a beating heart once.
And I hate that, especially because I don't fall into either of the categories, and I sometimes get flak for that. Like, some days, I'll eat something that's vegan and I get a ton of vegans liking my posts, and then the next day I'm eating meat and those same vegans freak out and say I'm a monster or something.
Some people use the word "Flexitarian," to say that they eat plants some days and animals other days. Sometimes they drink cow's milk. Most days they eat a plant based diet but they like the occasional scrambled egg.
Seriously, why complicate it? If someone asked me what my "classification" is, I'd tell them the truth: I'm an omnivore. I eat meat and plants. Humans are naturally (and scientifically) classified as an omnivore species. That's what I am. I eat meat and plants, just like a large portion of the human population, and I generally try to eat healthy and in season. It's not complicated.
That said, I have stopped drinking cow's milk, and I drink soy milk now, exclusively, but not for any other reason than I feel better when I drink soy and I like the taste. But I love me some grilled cheese. Mmmm.
Anyway, rant over. Back to this recipe. Almost vegan friendly. I found the inspiration for this recipe at Real Simple, and really liked the idea. Then I made modifications to it because I'm weird like that.

1 cup quinoa
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 small sweet potatoes (about 1 pound), peeled and cut into 3/4-inch pieces
1/2 cup almonds, dry toasted
1 package white mushrooms
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 bunch kale, stems discarded and leaves torn into 2-inch pieces
3/4 cup dry white wine
salt and pepper, to taste
grated fresh Parmesan

Place the quinoa and 2 cups water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, until water is absorbed, 12 to 15 minutes. When cooked, stir in the toasted almonds.
Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat.
Add the sweet potatoes and mushrooms and cook, tossing occasionally, until golden and beginning to soften, 5 to 6 minutes.
Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute.
Add the kale, wine, ¾ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Cook, tossing often, until the vegetables are tender, 10 to 12 minutes.
Serve the vegetables over the quinoa and sprinkle with the Parmesan.

And that's it. It's really simple, delicious, and healthy. Make it vegan and skip the cheese.
I added almonds to this partially because I think almonds and quinoa are a match made in heaven, but also for healthy fats. It adds a nice, flavourful crunch to the dish.

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