Sunday, May 10, 2015

Spring Green Produce Bowl

I love meals in bowls, in part because it's fun to come up with recipes based on what I have on hand or what looks good at the grocery.  My basic formula is grains and/or lentils on the bottom, a combination of raw and cooked vegetables, a fun sauce, and maybe some meat or cheese. Here, I took advantage of lots of green veggies to create a bowl that tastes totally spring-y, combining a base of green lentils and quinoa with raw spinach, sauteed zucchini, shishito peppers, cubed apple, broiled chicken, and feta.  The shishito peppers in particular are a favorite of mine, because they cook up so simply but have amazing (and unique) flavor.  Granny smith apples lent a burst of juicy, tart, sweetness that worked well with all the other flavors. I kept the dressing simple since there were so many other flavors going on -- just a little Dijon shaken in a jam jar with lemon juice and olive oil.

The "recipe" below is more of a collection of suggested ingredients.  This would be very easy to change up based on other favorite green vegetables...I'm thinking of green beans, fava beans, arugula, snap peas, and asparagus...yum!  You can't go too wrong here.  Depsite all the components, this meal was actually very quick -- I prepped and cooked all the components while the lentils were cooking, so the total time was around 35-40 minutes.  You just need some counter space to work with so that you can lay out each ingredient as it's finished.  Happy Mother's Day and Happy Spring!

Spring Green Produce Bowl...a loose guide...

Green lentils + quinoa: simmer the lentils in salted water for about 35 minutes, and add the quinoa with about 13 minutes to go. Drain well.

Broiled chicken breast seasoned with smoked paprika and kosher salt

Vegetables: zucchini coins sautéed with minced garlic, flash-sautéed shishito peppers with lots of lemon juice, and raw baby spinach

Toppings: cubed Granny Smith apple and crumbled feta

Lemon-Dijon dressing: lemon juice, olive oil, Dijon mustard, fresh thyme leaves, salt, and pepper

To assemble, add a scoop of the lentil-quinoa mixture to the bottom of your bowl and drizzle with a little dressing.  Layer on raw spinach, and top with chicken, zucchini, peppers, and apple.  Drizzle with more dressing, and then sprinkle with feta.

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