Forest Bowl

Looking for something that feels like Fall, and also feels “healthy” after Thanksgiving? Look no further than this Forest Bowl.  The beauty of this dish assembled is reason enough to try it.  Admittedly, this is the kind of meal that takes awhile to prepare, but once you have the cooked ingredients, it’s really easy to take for lunch and/or make for a quick weeknight dinner.img_2329

Forest Bowl

adapted from Pure & Beautiful Vegan Cooking

serves 4

INGREDIENTS – BOWL

1 cup quinoa, uncooked & rinsed

2 cups water

3 small sweet potatoes, diced

Wild arugula & chopped romaine

1/4 cup dried blueberries

2 tbsp chopped walnuts

2 tbsp pepitas (pumpkin seeds) or sunflower seeds

INGREDIENTS – BLUEBERRY BALSAMIC VINAIGRETTE

1/2 cup fresh or frozen & thawed (wild) blueberries

1/4 cup quality balsamic vinegar

2 tbsp fresh lemon juice (about 1 lemon)

1 tbsp agave nectar or maple syrup (I prefer agave)

Pinch of kosher salt

Dash of ground black pepper

DIRECTIONS

  1.  In a medium saucepan, bring the quinoa and water to a boil over high heat. Reduce to a simmer and cover; cook for 15 – 20 minutes.  Once done, the water should be evaporated and the quinoa tender. Fluff with a fork and set aside.
  2. Steam the sweet potatoes for 15 minutes, until fork tender, while the quinoa cooks.
  3. While the quinoa and sweet potatoes cook, make the dressing by combining all the ingredients in a blender or small food processor; blend for about 30 seconds on high until smooth.  Transfer to a small pitcher or measuring cup.
  4. You can serve this as one big bowl or individual bowls.  Either way, divide the bowl (see picture above for reference) so that one half has a handful of arugula, while the other top half has the sweet potato, with the quinoa below it.  Top with dried blueberries, walnuts and pumpkin or sunflower seeds.  Drizzle vinaigrette on top, 1 tbsp for each serving.

NOTE – For individual servings (like in a lunch box below), I like to use the following measurements – 1/3 -1/2 cup cooked quinoa, 1/3 cup sweet potato, 1/2 tbsp dried blueberries, 1/2 tbsp walnuts, 1/2 tbsp sunflower or pumpkin seeds, and a few handfuls of arugula or chopped romaine.

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