Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Vegetarian’

Buffalo Cauliflower with Blue Cheese | Relishing It

Cauliflower has always been a favorite vegetable in our house.  When my kids were infants I used to make homemade baby food, and puréed cauliflower was always at the top of their favorites list.  It still is, though now– obviously– they prefer it in the crunchy form.  I pack it into their lunches everyday.  And it’s not just my kids that love this wonderful vegetable.  I never tire of it because there are so many different ways to enjoy it.  The version I’m sharing with you today is so simple that I feel a little silly even giving a “recipe” for it.  But, I also realize that sometimes a food blogger’s responsibility is more than sharing multi-step recipes.  So here, I guess my goal is just want to you crave something so badly that you have to make it.

Buffalo Cauliflower with Blue Cheese | Relishing It

Buffalo Cauliflower with Blue Cheese | Relishing It

Buffalo Cauliflower with Blue Cheese | Relishing It

Buffalo Cauliflower with Blue Cheese | Relishing It

If you like buffalo sauce (and who doesn’t?), you’re going to want to make this.  And if you like blue cheese, it’s a guarantee.  Personally, I can’t get enough buffalo sauce.  And that actually goes for most hot sauces.  I’m an addict pure and simple.  I’m not ashamed.  Last time I checked, we had six different hot sauces in the refrigerator.  And while, I love to make my own salsas and hot sauces, I haven’t actually taken the plunge and tried making my own buffalo sauce.  Maybe I’ll give it a whirl this summer, but for now your favorite bottled version will work wonderfully.  It is so addictive drizzled onto perfectly roasted cauliflower with pockets of melted blue cheese here and there.  This is the perfect afternoon snack when you want big flavor, but you still want to stay on the healthy side.  Devouring a huge head of cauliflower can’t be wrong.  Am I right?  You’ll see when you give it a try.  Enjoy!

Buffalo Cauliflower with Blue Cheese | Relishing It

The Recipe: Buffalo Cauliflower with Blue Cheese

1 large head of cauliflower, broken into small florets

olive oil

kosher salt

bufflalo sauce ( I love Frank’s Buffalo Sauce)

crumbled blue cheese

celery sticks, for serving

Preheat oven to 400°F.  Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.  Toss the cauliflower florets with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt.  Roast until a deep golden color begins to develop, flipping once to brown all sides.  When the cauliflower is tender enough for your liking (much will depend upon how big the pieces are), about 25 minutes or so, remove from the oven.  Toss with buffalo sauce using a utensil to coat all sides, then sprinkle with a bit of blue cheese.  Return to oven for a couple of minutes until the blue cheese has melted.  Remove from oven and serve with celery sticks.  Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by Relishing It!

Laurie

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos | Relishing It

If you live in the Twin Cities and you frequent Farmers Markets during the summer months, chances are you’ve seen the food truck for ‘Chef Shack‘.  I stop by whenever I see it, because their food is interesting and fantastic.  So, when my good friend, Stephanie Meyer, from Fresh Tart asked me to test a recipe from the Chef Shack for her new book, Twin Cities Chef’s Table— I jumped at the opportunity.  And as it turned out, it was one of my favorite dishes from the truck.  I love these tacos and I was thrilled that I would have early access to this incredible recipe.

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos | Relishing It

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos | Relishing It

These tacos are a perfect alternative when you want to skip meat for a meal (or always).  The sweet potatoes are creamy and have a subtle cumin flavor, while the black beans are studded with white onion, jalapeños, lime, and a bit more cumin.  But, I think the absolute star of the dish is the quick pickled cabbage slaw.  It adds the necessary crunch and the flavors of the apple cider brine (with red onion, ginger, garlic, peppercorns, star anise, coriander, mustard, and fennel seeds) marry beautifully with the sweet potato and black beans.  The sour cream sauce is also brilliant.  It’s simple.  And I was honestly a bit surprised to find out that there was ketchup in it!  It works fabulously, trust me.  This is a perfect dish to serve to guests for a fun taco night.  It’s completely affordable and is a great vegetarian option.  It works well to make ahead and reheat.  But, most of all– the flavors will please you so much.

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos | Relishing It

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos | Relishing It

Not surprisingly these amazing tacos are just one of so many delicious recipes in Steph’s book.  It features some of the best eateries, food trucks, local farms, breweries, and co-ops from Minneapolis /St. Paul and a recipe from each of them.  I personally know many of these chefs– they are friends, they are neighbors.  These are extremely talented men and woman who can do phenomenal things with locally-sourced, high-quality ingredients.  This book is inspirational and will make you want to eat better. Not to mention it is brilliantly written.  Steph has poured her heart into this project and her dedication and care really show.  I am so proud of the current Twin Cities food scene and I am so proud of her for capturing it beautifully.  We have so much to offer here in Minnesota, and it’s nice to be able to point to a cookbook that proves this.  So, whether you are from here and would like to be able to make some of your favorite foods from your favorite places at home, or if you just want to have a little taste of our Minnesotan life– this book is one you must have.

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos | Relishing It

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos | Relishing It

The Recipe: Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos

(serves 6-8)

1/2 medium head red cabbage, cored and shredded

3 cups organic apple cider vinegar

1/2 cup granulated sugar

3 cups cold water

1 tablespoon each black peppercorns, mustard seeds,, coriander seeds, fennel seeds, and star anise

2 cloves garlic, smashed

1/4 cup peeled and grated fresh ginger

1/4 cup diced red onion

2 large sweet potatoes

olive oil

salt and freshly grated black pepper

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

1 teaspoon ground cumin, divided

4 cups canned organic black beans and their juices

1 cup small-diced white onion

1 tablespoon diced jalapeno

1 tablespoon hot sauce (such as Cholula, Tapatillo, or locally made Lucky’s), plus another dash for sauce

2 cups sour cream

2 tablespoons prepared organic mayonnaise

2 tablespoons organic ketchup

juice of one lime

fresh corn or homemade flour tortillas

Put cabbage in a colander and rinse with cold water.  Set aside to drain. In a large saucepan, combine vinegar, sugar, water, spices, garlic, ginger, and red onion to make the pickle brine.  Set over medium-high heat and bring to a boil.  Transfer cabbage to a large bowl and pour hot pickle brine over the cabbage.  Cover and set in refrigerator to chill.

Preheat oven to 375°F.  Place sweet potatoes in oven (I generally don’t wrap mine in foil) and bake for about 45 minutes, or until fork tender. Let cool a bit, the slice down the middle and scoop the flesh into a bowl and mash the butter, 1/2 teaspoon cumin, salt and pepper into it. Keep warm. (If in a rush, microwaving them is an option, too.)

While the potatoes roast, place beans and their liquid in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan.  Set over medium-high heat and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer beans, uncovered until very tender and the liquid is absorbed, about 25 minutes.  Add onion, jalapeño, hot sauce, and remaining 1/2 teaspoon cumin and mash together with a fork.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Keep warm.

In a medium bowl, stir together sour cream, mayonnaise, ketchup, lime juice, and salt, pepper, and a dash of hot sauce to taste.

To assemble and serve the tacos: warm tortillas and top with a spoonful of black beans, a spoonful of sweet potatoes, a bit of cabbage and a drizzle of the sour cream sauce.  Enjoy!

Source: Recipe adapted from Chef Shack (Lisa Carlson & Carrie Summers, Chefs/Owners) via Twin Cities Chef’s Table by Stephanie A. Meyer

Thanks so much for stopping by!

Laurie

 

Read Full Post »

Socca with Greek Vegetable Salsa | Relishing It

By now you must have heard of socca, right?  Well if you haven’t, it’s simply garbanzo bean (chickpea) flour made into a pancake or flatbread.  It’s a nice gluten-free alternative that tastes fantastic– I bet I eat it about once a week.  Chickpeas are a great source of protein with a wonderful flavor.  A while back I posted a different recipe for socca.  It’s still one of my favorites– especially with the sweet potatoes, kale, italian sausage, and creamy buttermilk dressing.  That one is more of a pancake, while this most-certainly is not.

Socca with Greek Vegetable Salsa | Relishing It

Socca with Greek Vegetable Salsa | Relishing It

This version is thinner and crispier, with the characteristics of a flatbread.  I like to eat this one as a piece of “bread” piled high with delicious toppings– usually vegetables.  Today I made a lovely little greek vegetable ensemble that works so well with the socca.  Other times, fresh corn, tomatoes, scallions, and cotija cheese serve the purpose.  You get the idea.  Use whatever you have around the house/garden and let the socca be the instrument to get it into your mouth.

Socca with Greek Vegetable Salsa | Relishing It

Socca with Greek Vegetable Salsa | Relishing It

It’s nice in that the ingredient list is small to make socca and the cooking time is barely five minutes.  The longest part of this process is waiting about 30 minutes for the flour to fully absorb the water.  Believe me, I’ve rushed this part before, and it’s not a huge deal.  But, if you can wait– you’ll end up with perfect, crispy-edged flatbread that is sturdy enough for toppings.  Rather than frying the flatbread, you cook it under the broiler– a technique that my friend, Angharad (another fellow socca lover), introduced me to.  It works really slick.  All sides get browned and crispy.  This meal is perfect to whip up on a moments notice and you’ll love it.  Trust me.

Socca with Greek Vegetable Salsa | Relishing It

Socca with Greek Vegetable Salsa | Relishing It

The Recipe: Socca with Greek Vegetable Salsa

(serves 1)

For the Socca:

1/2 cup chickpea flour (garbanzo bean flour)

1/2 cup water

pinch of salt

1 teaspoon olive oil, plus more for the pan

For the Greek Vegetable Salsa:

1/2 large cucumber, diced

2 radishes, diced

1/2 cup grape tomatoes, halved

1 red scallion, diced

2-3 tablespoons feta cheese, crumbled

3-4 tablespoons kalamata olives, chopped

2 peperoncinis, diced (optional)

handful fresh parsley and sprig of thyme, minced

drizzle of olive oil

salt and pepper, to taste

In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the chickpea flour, water, salt, and olive oil.  Let rest for about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine the ingredients for the Greek vegetable salsa in a medium-sized bowl.  Set aside.

After the batter has rested for 30 minutes, place the oven rack in the position closest to the broiler.  Heat a cast-iron skillet under the broiler for 5 minutes (this helps cook the bottom of the socca quickly).  Remove from the oven an add enough olive oil to coat the pan when swirled.  Then add the batter and swirl around until the bottom of the pan is evenly coated.  Place under the broiler and cook until the top is a deep golden brown, about 5-7 minutes.  You will probably have to move the pan around once or twice during this time, to bake evenly.  Remove from oven and use a spatula to carefully remove from the pan.  Drizzle with olive oil and sea salt.  Cut.  And serve with the greek vegetable salsa, or any other topping you would like.  Or eat it plain– it’s all delicious!  Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by Relishing It!  Have a great day.

Laurie

Read Full Post »

Black Rice Ramen with Sesame Garlic Ginger Scallion Sauce | Relishing It

I just got back from an amazing walk.  The temperature was perfect at a nice cool 60 degrees, the birds were singing, and a beautiful assortment of tulips soaked up the sun.  A walk on a day like today is good for clearing my head.  So, now I’m home with a full cup of coffee, ready to tell you about this fantastic recipe that I conjured up.

Black Rice Ramen with Sesame Garlic Ginger Scallion Sauce | Relishing It

I recently came across organic black rice (forbidden rice) ramen noodles at my co-op.  You may remember this recipe that has black rice.  Or this one, with a bit of a Spring twist.  I love black rice– it’s ridiculously healthy.  So, when I found it in pasta form, I was excited.  I generally use brown rice noodles, so I’m thrilled to have another healthy option.  Fear not, if you can’t find black rice ramen– most any thin pasta will work here–regular ramen, vermicelli, angel hair pasta, just about anything really.

Black Rice Ramen with Sesame Garlic Ginger Scallion Sauce | Relishing It

This is a really quick dinner that can be whipped-up in about 20 minutes.  It’s versatile in that it can be served hot or cold, which is a nice option for the upcoming warmer months.  It’s also versatile in that you can pair any of your favorite vegetables with it and it will be fantastic.  Red peppers come to mind.  I’m on a broccoli kick…still.  And so are my kids, so that’s what I went with.  The vegetables can be roasted, quickly sautéed, or even raw.  You decide. I generally roast mine, but I know that will stop with the summer heat.   The sauce is simple and packed with flavor.  The sesame, garlic, ginger, and scallions all compliment one another.  The sauce is light– it barely coats the noodles and vegetables.  I didn’t want it loaded with oil (read calories), but I still wanted it potent.  When you toss all of the ingredients together, make sure to reserve a bit of pasta water.  You can use that to loosen everything up, if necessary.  Be sure to taste and re-season with more soy sauce or sesame oil, if you want a bit more punch.  Hope you enjoy!  We sure did.

Black Rice Ramen with Sesame Garlic Ginger Scallion Sauce | Relishing It

The Recipe: Black Rice Ramen with Sesame Garlic Ginger Scallion Sauce

(serves 2)

2 squares of ramen, (about 5 ounces total)

2 tablespoons olive oil or peanut, if you have it

4 teaspoons finely chopped fresh ginger

6 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

1/2 teaspoon hoisin sauce

4 teaspoons sesame oil

2 tablespoons soy sauce

4 scallions, thinly sliced

handful of broccoli and crimini mushrooms, bite-size

sesame seeds and chopped peanuts for garnish

(Note: This meal comes together rather quickly– you’ll need to work fast and be attentive.)

Preheat oven to 375ºF.  Bring a medium sauce pan filled with water to a boil.

On a baking sheet, roast the broccoli and mushrooms for 3-4 minutes, or until slightly tender.  Remove from oven.   Place the ramen in the boiling water and keep a watchful eye.  It will only need about 5 minutes to cook.  Test along the way.  Reserve some cooking water.  When tender, drain.

Meanwhile, in a medium-sized skillet over medium-low heat,  heat the olive oil and add the ginger, garlic, and red pepper flakes.  Sauté for about 1-2 minutes until aromatic.  Then add the vinegar, hoisin, sesame oil, and soy sauce and whisk together until warmed through.  Add most of the scallions, reserving a few for garnish.  Sauté for 30 seconds.  Toss in the vegetables and then the ramen.  Use tongs to toss everything together.  Loosen with 1-2 tablespoons of pasta water, if need be.  Taste.  Re-season with soy sauce and sesame oil, if desired.  Top with sesame seeds, chopped peanuts, and reserved scallions.  If wanting to make a cold version, run the pasta under cold water.   You may need a bit more oil to loosen the pasta, if cold.  Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by Relishing It today!

Laurie

Read Full Post »

Vegetarian Lentil Taco Soup | Relishing ItBaby, it’s cold outside!  Or at least it is here in Minnesota.  There is definitely that ‘winter-is-coming’ chill in the air.  And this is just the start.  Wind chills will eventually plummet to -50 degrees F, snow will pile up on the sidewalks.  Ugh.  I always complain as autumn comes to a close, knowing that we face the long slog to April.  My body just isn’t acclimated to the cold for the first month or so.  Ah well, I guess there’s also the comforting expectation of snuggling into a warm blanket and a good book while the kids head out to play in the snow.  There is that to look forward to…

Homemade Taco Seasoning | Relishing It

Homemade Taco Seasoning | Relishing It

Vegetarian Lenti; Taco Soup | Relishing It

As soon as the weather turns, I start thinking about soup.  This particular one is a beauty.  It’s substantial– more like a cross between a soup and a stew.  It’s loaded with healthy protein from lentils and beans, though my favorite ingredient this time around is most definitely the corn.  It makes so many soups better.  It adds a nice flavor and a bit of texture, as well.  Not to mention, it pairs beautifully with the Mexican flavors.

Vegetarian Lentil Taco Soup | Relishing It

Let’s talk about those flavors, shall we?  Years ago I began making my own taco mix.  To be honest, it happened a bit by accident.  I ran out of my usual purchased taco seasoning, so I had to improvise.  Luckily, I keep a well stocked spice cabinet (Penzys really should send me a thank you note).  In looking at the recipe, don’t let the length of the list scare you.  I realize that not everyone has all of the spices on hand.  As long as you have the main ones (chili, paprika, garlic, onion, and cumin powder), you will be just fine.  But, if you do happen to have the others, even better.  Try this seasoning the next time you make traditional tacos– you’ll love it!

Vegetarian Lentil Taco Soup | Relishing ItThe soup is wonderful served with the usual taco accompaniments– sour cream, cilantro, jalapeños, and of course some tortilla chips. However, I also discovered another way that I like to eat the leftovers.  Since the legumes continue to soak up more broth overnight, the soup becomes a bit thicker.  I love to serve it atop baked spaghetti squash.  It’s delicious and makes a great gluten-free, paleo, and even vegan meal! So– perfect to serve to friends or family that might be trying to eat that particular way.  Stay warm, friends!

Vegetarian Lentil Taco Soup Over Spaghetti Squash | Relishing It

The Recipe: Vegetarian Lentil Taco Soup

(serves 4-6 comfortably)

2 cups dry brown lentils, rinsed

2/3 cup dry red beans (or 1 can), rinsed

2/3 cup dry black beans (or 1 can), rinsed

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup chopped white onion

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 quart puréed or crushed tomatoes

1 quart vegetable broth (or use chicken, if you’re not trying to stay vegetarian)

1 heaping cup frozen corn

1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

juice of one lime

scallions, jalapeños, sour cream (if vegan isn’t your aim) and limes as garnish options

For the Taco Seasoning:

(makes a scant 1/2 cup)

2 tablespoons ancho chili powder

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon sweet paprika

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon onion powder

2 teaspoons kosher salt

2 teaspoons coarse black pepper

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

To begin: soak and cook your red and black beans separately following standard directions to cook beans.  Honestly, I usually have extras in my freezer that I pull out to throw into this soup.  Beans freeze incredibly well, so feel free to make extras for that purpose. You’ll want about 1 1/2 cups of cooked red beans, and 1 1/2 cups of cooked black beans.  Or simple choose to use one can of each, rinsed.

Mix all of the taco seasoning ingredients together in small bowl, set aside.

Heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat and add the olive oil.   Begin to saute the onion and garlic for a couple of minutes until somewhat soft.  Add the taco seasoning to the onion mixture.  Then add the tomatoes, vegetables stock, cooked red and black beans, and the lentils.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a medium simmer.  Cook covered for about 30-40 minutes, or until the lentils are tender, but have not fallen apart.  Stirring a couple of times along the way.  Make sure not to overcook the lentils, or they will turn to mush.  When the soup is done, add the frozen corn, cilantro, and juice of one lime.  Reseason with salt and pepper, if necessary.  Serve with sour cream, cilantro, jalapeños, and more lime.  Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by Relishing It!

Laurie

Read Full Post »

Salad of Green and Yellow Split Peas with Pesto via Relishing It

In case you haven’t caught on yet, I’m a huge advocate of having a pantry stuffed with dried goods.  Legumes, grains, you name it, I’ve got it in a mason jar ready for use.  And on those occasions when I notice it isn’t stocked full, I briefly panic and then run out to replenish whatever is missing.  I guess it’s almost a compulsion, since it’s not like I’m going to not have access to food– I live a few blocks from our co-op.  I may be a little crazy, but I embrace it.

Salad of Green and Yellow Split Peas with Pesto via Relishing It

Summer is a great time to combine those dried goods with some of the season’s freshest offerings.  I love the combination of peas and pesto.  Using dried yellow and green split peas here works beautifully and is absolutely stunning to look at.  The sliced scallion on top provides a nice crunch and a burst of freshness.  This salad is also very filling– it’s one of those that can be a stand-alone meal.  And with a smaller portion size, it pairs wonderfully with most any grilled foods.

Salad of Green and Yellow Split Peas with Pesto via Relishing It

Salad of Green and Yellow Split Peas with Pesto via Relishing It

About this time of year, I also start to make large batches of pesto to freeze for the winter.  I’ll pop a small portion into ice cube trays or muffin tins to fully freeze.  I then pop them out, wrap them in plastic wrap, and put them into freezer bags (or use my vacuum sealer).  It’s a wonderful treat in the cold winter months to have pesto to mix into pasta or to dollop into soups.  If you choose to do this– a word of advice.  If you blanch your greens for just 30 seconds or so, then put it into an ice bath to stop the cooking process and proceed with the recipe–your pesto will remain a beautiful, vibrant green, even after it has been frozen.  I always use this method if I’m planning to freeze my pesto, or even if I know I’m going to have leftovers that may sit in my refrigerator for a few days.  The color just ‘pops’.  One more trick regarding pesto, remember you have the option to add a bit of water instead of more olive oil to loosen it up if it’s a bit thick.  Either way, be sure to season it appropriately with kosher salt– the right amount can make the pesto sing!  Enjoy!

Salad of Green and Yellow Split Peas with Pesto via Relishing It

The Recipe: Salad of Green and Yellow Split Peas with Pesto

(serves 4-6)

Large bed of leafy lettuce leaves

1 cup dried green split peas

1 cup dried yellow split peas

1 bunch of sliced scallions to garnish

For the Pesto:

1 cup packed basil leaves

1/4 cup packed Italian leaf parsley

3 cloves garlic, smashed

1/4 cup grated parmesan or grana padano cheese

1/4 cup walnut halves, toasted and roughly chopped

1/3 – 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, or more

sprinkle of hot pepper flakes

kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

To cook the Split Peas:  Rinse the peas and place in a large saucepan.  Cover with salted water, making sure that about two inches of water are above the peas.  Bring to a boil, then reduce to a medium/low.  Cook for about 25 minutes, then begin testing them for doneness.  You may need to cook them longer, depending upon how high your heat was.  You will want them to be soft, but retain their shape.  Be careful not to overcook them, or they will turn to mush.  When done, drain the water and let cool.

To make the Pesto:  As I stated above, you can choose to blanch the greens or not, depending upon how fast you’re going to use the pesto.  You decide.  Place either the blanched or unblanched basil and parsley into a small food processor (use a large one, if making a bigger batch).  Pulse a few times to chop up a bit.  Add the parmesan, walnuts, garlic, red pepper flakes, and a pinch of salt and pepper.  Pulse a couple more times to combine.  With the machine running on low, slowly begin adding the olive oil.  Scrape down the sides, as necessary.  Add as much olive oil to reach your desired consistency.  Or, add a few tablespoons of water at the very end to loosen it up a bit.  Re-season with salt and pepper.  Use right away, or place in the refrigerator with plastic wrap tightly pushed onto it’s surface, or freeze.

Place the lettuce leave onto a large platter.  Mix the cooled split peas with about 1/3 cup of the pesto, use more if desired.  Add salt and pepper, if needed.  Pour mixture over the lettuce, top with sliced scallions, and a drizzle of good olive oil.  Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by today!

xo

Laurie

Read Full Post »

Chickpea and Black Rice Salad via Relishing It

So now that school is out, I’m trying to get my bearings straight.  We are four days into summer vacation, and while I am more than thrilled to have my son home all day long, it’s not without its…complications.  Aanen has this amazing contagious personality– he is truly a joy to be around.  He and his sister get along swimmingly.   And I love not having to pack his lunch every morning and rush him off to school.  Mornings around our house are brilliant.  However…it’s the rest of the day that gets a bit more hectic.  We’re I’m missing my schedule.  I knew exactly how much I could squeeze into a day and how much I could get done.  Now play dates, outings, parks, and pools have all taken its place.  And though I absolutely love all of these things, it’s hard to get any real work done.  I know I’m not unique in this situation or these feelings, but it sure feels good to ramble on about it.

Chickpea and Black Rice Salad via Relishing it

So how does that tie-in to today’s post?  Well, in the hustle and bustle of our summers we tend to eat much simpler food.  It’s easy to do with all of the fresh produce, so I’m absolutely fine with it.  I’ll often make a huge salad or two at the beginning of the week from legumes and grains and we’ll nibble on it for a few days.  It works well when we’re constantly running out the door.  This salad in particular keeps well.  And it’s absolutely perfect to pack for picnics.

Chickpea and Black Rice Salad via Relishing It

Chickpea and Black Rice Salad via Relishing It

I’ve always been a fan of chickpeas.  They’re loaded with protein, and they’re substantial enough to turn a salad into a meal.  If you’re not familiar with black rice, give it a chance.  Here’s a previous dish that I made using it.  I love black rice, sometimes called “forbidden rice”.   It’s nutty and similar in taste to wild rice.  It’s loaded with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and fiber.  You can read more about it here.  I realize that some of you may not the able to find black rice and that’s ok.  Quinoa is also a wonderful substitute and is loaded with its own health benefits.  Radishes give this meal a nice little crunch and they are so wonderful this time of year.  The preserved lemon adds a burst of brightness that makes you smile every time you bite into a tiny piece.  If you haven’t made preserved lemons yet, do it now.  They add so much to summer salads.  Here’s a recipe from my blog.  Or you can do the salt pack method, which is how I made this last batch.  This is a recipe for that method.  Obviously, if you don’t have preserved lemons on hand, you should still give this salad a try.  The parsley and subtle shallot vinaigrette bring all of the flavor together and I love the fact that it’s so healthy!  Makes me feel better about all of the ice cream that my kids are devouring.  Hope you enjoy!

Chickpea and Black Rice Salad via Relishing It

The Recipe:  Chickpea and Black Rice Salad with a Shallot Vinaigrette

2 cups dried chickpeas, cooked (see note)

1 cup black rice, cooked  (see note)

1 bunch radishes, chopped

2 tablespoons finely chopped preserved lemon

1 bunch Italian parsley, chopped

For the Shallot Vinaigrette:

1 -2 tablespoons finely chopped shallot, or red onion

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, from 2 small lemons

1 tablespoon white wine vinegar (champagne or plain rice vinegar can also be substituted)

about 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil, or a bit more

sea salt and cracked pepper, to taste

Note:  To cook dried chickpeas, place in a large saucepan covered with cold, salted water.  Bring to a boil.  Let boil for a few minutes.  Cover and turn off the heat.  Let sit for 1-2 hours.  Bring to a boil again and cook for a few more minutes until they are your desired tenderness.  To make the black rice, place in a large saucepan and cover with cold, salted water by a couple inches.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat just a bit.  Let cook until the rice is tender (about 25 minutes).  Drain the water.

To make the Shallot Vinaigrette:  Place the chopped shallot in a bowl, or jar, and sprinkle with a little salt.  Pour the vinegar and lemon juice on top and let soften for about 15 minutes.  Then whisk in the olive oil, or give the jar a shake.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Place in the refrigerator, let it warm up for a few minutes before you plan to use it.

Place the rice and chickpeas into a large serving bowl along with the parsley, radishes, and preserved lemon.  Pour as much dressing over the salad as you like.  Start with a little and add more, you will not need to use the entire amount that you made.  Toss the ingredients together and let the flavors meld for a bit.  You can even refrigerate it and let it warm a bit before serving.  This salad will keep well for days.  Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by Relishing It!

xo

Laurie

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: