5 Things You Don’t Know + RECIPE: Quinoa Veggie Bowl with Tahini Sauce

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1. Besides being a farmer and a blogger, I work at an amazing non-profit that is literally changing the world every day. I have worked and/or volunteered for them for about 5 years now and am still so much in love. Midwest Environmental Advocates. Look ’em up. Follow them on Facebook. Read about cool things they’re doing in the Journal Sentinel. They are the most amazing.

2. I love to play online poker. Like a lot. Like maybe too much…

3. If I could, I would eat most anything and everything roasted at 450 degrees and then tossed with Kosher salt, red pepper flakes and maple syrup. Sometimes, at the tail end of the farming season when I’m not quite ready to give up vegetables, I actually do eat everything this way.

4. I own a desert tortoise. Well technically my carrot husband owns a desert tortoise but we are married now so that means I own him too. His name is Norman. The tortoise. Not the husband.

5. Up until about a month ago, I detested tahini. I thought it was heavy and gritty and had a bad aftertaste. Yuck yuck yuck. What an unreasonable ingredient. Smitten Kitchen was always talking about it. Molly Yeh was always talking about it. But I didn’t care. I wasn’t buying or using that expensive yucky stuff. Apparently in 2015, something changed. I’m suddenly obsessed. I knew Smitten and Molly couldn’t be wrong.

I would eat the tahini sauce from the recipe below on pretty much any vegetable. Or grain. Or meat. I might even like it better than the sesame sauce from a couple weeks ago. Might. They both have their own distinct merits and advantages. Either way, whip up a batch. In my opinion, it will be too much for the veggies and quinoa that I recommend making at the same time. But don’t get too stressed out about it. Just put the leftover sauce in the fridge for some later-in-the-week roasted Brussels sprouts. Excess sauce is never a bad thing. Especially when its laced with tahini. (ohmygodwhoami!?)

Happy its almost Valentine’s Day!!
-Leek

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QUINOA VEGGIE BOWL WITH TAHINI SAUCE
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

Takes 45 minutes- 1 hour, depending how good you are at multitasking
Makes 2-4 servings

3/4 cup quinoa
1 1/2 cup water
1 sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
1 large head broccoli (hopefully a pound), cut into medium-sized florets
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds, white or black
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons butter
2 cups sliced crimini mushrooms
Tahini Sauce:
3 tablespoons tahini
2 tablespoons white miso paste
1 tablespoon sesame oil
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon soy sauce
Fresh ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Toast quinoa in a small pot over high heat for about 1 minute.  Add water and a few pinches of Kosher salt.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce to low, cover and cook for 15-17 minutes until liquid is gone and quinoa is fluffy. Remove from heat. Set aside.
Toss sweet potatoes and broccoli with oil, salt, sesame seeds and a good sprinkling of freshly ground black pepper.  Add to a baking sheet. Mine fit all on one, strategically.  Feel free to use two baking sheets. Place in preheated oven for 25 minutes.  Remove. Toss gently and cook for 10-15 more minutes until charred in spots. You can remove the broccoli at 25 minutes if you don’t like the char (but you should. I love the char).
In a separate small skillet, melt butter (use can absolutely use oil if you’re vegan. I just love mushrooms sauteed in butter) over medium heat.  Add sliced mushrooms and a little bit of salt and pepper.  Cook for 10-15 minutes.  I like my mushrooms to shrink almost in half and begin to brown on all sides for this recipe.  Set aside.
Meanwhile, mix your sauce together.  First combine the tahini, miso paste sesame oil and olive oil. Whisk until smooth. Add vinegar, honey, soy sauce and pepper to taste. Feel free to add a little more honey (or tahini!) but do not, under any circumstances, add more salt. The quinoa, roasted veggies and mushrooms are all already salted.
Build you bowl!  Start with quinoa, add roasted veggies, then mushrooms, then as much sauce as you like (more is always best). Sprinkle with toasted white or black sesame seeds if the mood strikes you.

3 Comments Add yours

  1. casandralee says:

    need to try this recipe! thanks for posting it

    Like

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