Food

Grain Bowl: The Summer Grilling Version.

June 29, 2015

Summer Grain Bowl Title

   Summer Grain Bowl 1

Summer Grain Bowl 2

One of my favorite rituals, and one that I want to make sure I teach Miles to treasure, is that of eating together.

What better way to spend time with your toddler or small child, to instill healthy habits, and to introduce them to new delicious “real” food than to eat alongside them?

Now that we are starting to introduce Miles to more adult food, one of my favorite things to do with him during the day is to make something that we both like, sit down on the floor with him, and share.

Miles is a little obsessed with avocados and with pesto, so this is a pretty easy game to play. I make toast with avocado, sea salt, and lime juice or slice up some bread to dip in pesto and voila! Miles gets to experience new foods that he loves, I get to eat, and we spend quality time together.

This alternative to me frantically trying to find something to eat while he’s entertaining himself for 30 seconds has made our late mornings/early afternoon routines much richer and far less frantic and it gives me an excuse to introduce Miles to foods that I otherwise forget about.

A few mornings ago, I pulled out the leftovers from our grain bowl/grilled vegetable dinner the night before. (I’m a little obsessed with the grain bowl concept featured several times in my favorite magazine, Bon Appetit. If the idea of cooking bores you, try a subscription. I promise you won’t be disappointed and your life will change forever. Or something.)

I sat down by Miles and started to eat lunch with him while we played. He was SO excited to taste the savory quinoa and grilled butternut squash and I was thrilled to find yet another delicious nutritious adult dish that he would eat.

Whether you’re looking for a healthful summer dish for yourself or trying to find creative ways to introduce your baby to new, wonderful foods, this twist on the grain bowl will definitely be a summer favorite!

Summer Grain Bowl 3

Ingredients: 

1 cup quinoa

1 butternut squash

1 yellow squash

1 onion

A generous assortment of other fresh vegetables. We used 1/2 purple cabbage, a couple of bell peppers, broccoli, and cauliflower.

1/4 cup butter

2 garlic cloves

2 bouillon cubes

1 1/2 cups water

1/2 cup white wine

1 tsp. lemon juice

Pepper

Olive oil

Chop the vegetables into large pieces, at least 1 x 2 inches. Toss everything in a few tablespoons of olive oil and a few dashes of pepper. Place in a foil baking pan and set aside.

Summer Grain Bowl | The Orange Slate

Prepare the quinoa as follows:

Saute the quinoa in 1/2 a cube of butter and 2 garlic cloves. Dissolve two bouillon cubes in 1 1/2 cups of water and add. Add 1/2 cup of wine. Add fresh herbs, 1 tsp. of pepper, and 1 tsp. lemon juice. Cover and cook on medium heat until the liquid is dissolved.

Grill the vegetables in the foil pan until the squash is soft and the vegetables are well-seared. Combine with the quinoa on a plate. I like to drizzle some creamy balsamic dressing over the whole dish.

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Table

Bon Appetit’s Dream Grain Bowl: My Take

February 25, 2015

Bon Appetit's Dream Grain Bowl

Bon Appetit's Grain Bowl 1

As part of my word of the year, CREATE, I am intentionally working to create memories with my family this year. I have so many memories of wonderful food from my childhood and I want to make sure and give that same gift to Miles. This winter, I am making a concerted effort to try new recipes and to expand our table and tastes a bit.

My mom gave me a subscription to Bon Appetit Magazine and the afternoon when I check the mailbox and see the magazine peeking out of our mailbox at me is one of the most exciting of each month.

When I saw this recipe, I immediately knew I had to try it. It was the perfect combination of open-ended options (pick a grain! pick a green!) and precise directions (“do not toss”) on which I thrive. Also, it didn’t hurt that it was both incredibly delicious and satisfying and the most healthful meal we’d eaten that week. I have no idea if it’s Whole30 or pale or whatever, but it seems like quinoa + sweet potatoes + kale can’t help but be pretty good for you, right?

Here’s how I modified the recipe:

The recipe walked me through picking a base, greens, “crunch”, “upgrades”, a roast, and the dressing. I used my mixed quinoa (from Sam’s! Don’t judge!) for the base and kale for the greens. I sautéed almonds in some butter until they just barely started to turn a toasty brown – the crunch. I tossed sweet potatoes in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil, pepper, and hefty sea salt and then roasted them at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes (until they were well-done).

I just tossed some parmesan on the salad in place of the Halloumi cheese.

The recipe called for this dressing, but I didn’t have either turmeric or tahini on hand. (What is turmeric??) No worries. This is why Google was invented. I used peanut butter instead of tahini and just skipped the turmeric (lame, I know – patient precision is not my strongest virtue).

Folks, it took a few minutes more in terms of hands-on time than our average weeknight dinner. But it was so worth it. This grain bowl permanently changed my salad game.

Try it! And let me know what you modify (or maybe you actually follow directions?).

*This post contains some affiliate links. Thanks for supporting The Orange Slate!

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