I was up north this weekend celebrating a special birthday with my ladyfriend, lacking internet access and even cell phone reception (but it was a nice little break from technology), hence my little break from MoFo. My thumb is still healing and still painful at times, but much better than a couple days ago! Thanks everyone, for your response to my recipes and posts, and I’m excited to share more with you this month!
One of my themes for VeganMoFo, although I’m giving myself liberty to do anything I please, really, is revisiting old recipes from my blog (or occasionally esoteric notebook scrawling). This one is back from the first year of my blog and probably doesn’t exist anymore on the internet – Zesty Lemon Couscous with Chickpeas and Tomato. Except I used quinoa this time around for all you gluten-/wheat-free folks, and because I think it’s so lovely!
As with all simple meals, the quality of your ingredients is key; I learned that trying to make do without vegetable stock results in a far inferior dish! So veggie stock is a yes, and some fire-roasted tomatoes are a good bet here as well if you can get your hands on them. This comes together quickly, and makes for a tasty Mediterranean-style dish that is great with a fresh green salad or a side of steamed kale. Leave out the chili flakes if spice isn’t your thing, but it’s otherwise a little zippy, bright with lemon and tomato, and flecked with chopped fresh parsley. I’m glad this dish and I got reacquainted!
Zesty Lemon Quinoa with Chickpeas and Tomato
makes about 4 servings
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 cup quinoa, rinsed
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon crushed red chili flakes
1/4 teaspoon allspice
2 cups vegetable stock
1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas (or 1 15-ounce can, drained)
1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes (drained if you prefer a drier quinoa)
zest from one lemon (about 2-3 teaspoons)
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
fresh cherry tomatoes, quartered, for garnish (optional)
Heat the olive oil in a saucepan and saute the onions and garlic until translucent over medium-low heat. Add the quinoa and stir to coat in oil, then add the spices. Saute for a minute or two, until the quinoa is toasted and the spices are fragrant, but be careful not to burn the mixture. Add the vegetable stock and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until all the liquid is absorbed.
Add the chickpeas and diced tomatoes and cook another 5 minutes or until heated through. Stir in the lemon zest and parsley, and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve hot, garnished with cherry tomato quarters and additional parsley if desired.