This bowl is light, fresh, full of flavor and so easy to make. The base is a bed of a mix of half quinoa and half spinach. It’s topped with warm, crisp-tender Garlic Roasted Chickpeas, Kalamata olives, artichoke hearts, cucumbers, red peppers, tomatoes, toasted pine nuts and then drizzled with a roasted red pepper sauce.
- 1 cup quinoa
- 1 ½ cups Imagine Foods brand No-Chicken broth
- Zest of one lemon
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 cups baby spinach, chopped
- ½ cup pitted Kalamata olives, halved
- ½ (15-ounce) can artichoke hearts, halved
- 1 cup diced English cucumbers
- 1 cup diced red bell pepper
- 1 cup halved grape tomatoes
- ½ cup pine nuts, toasted
- ⅓ cup flat-leaf Italian parsley, chopped
- Garlic Roasted Chickpeas
- 2 cans garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
- ¼ cup nutritional yeast flakes
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt (use garlic powder instead to make lower in sodium)
- Roasted Red Pepper Sauce
- 1 (16-ounce) jar roasted red peppers packed in water, drained
- Garnish: a few sprigs of flat-leaf Italian parsley
- Make the Garlic Roasted Chickpeas: Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Drain two cans of garbanzo beans, but don’t rinse (The bean liquid that remains will help the spices adhere and brown without the need for oil). Dump beans onto a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet and sprinkle with nutritional yeast, then with garlic salt. Do not toss or stir. Bake for 30 minutes, gently flipping the last 10 minutes. Beans should be golden and crunchy.
- Make the quinoa: Place quinoa, No-Chicken Broth and zest of one lemon in a small pot. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook for 20 minutes. Allow to rest for at least 5 minutes. Add lemon juice and parsley and fluff with a fork.
- Make the Roasted Red Pepper Sauce: Place drained jar of roasted red peppers in a small blender or Magic Bullet and blend until smooth. (Note: do not add water, oil, salt or anything else. Just blended roasted red pepper is all that is needed for a delicious fat-free, salt-free dressing!)
- Assemble the bowl: In each of 4 large, shallow bowls, place quinoa in half and spinach in the other half. Layer with flavor, by drizzling with a bit of dressing. Place small mounds of each topping, alternating colors – Kalamata olives, artichoke hearts, cucumbers, red bell peppers, grape tomatoes, pine nuts and Garlic Roasted Chickpeas. Garnish with a sprig of parsley.
Nutrition Facts: The Mediterranean diet is based largely on whole plant foods including vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans and legumes, nuts and seeds with small amounts of animal products, olive oil and wine. But, just what is it about the Mediterranean diet that makes it one of the healthiest in the world? Is it the olive oil? The wine? The fish? No. According to a study done by the Cardiovascular Risk and Nutrition Research Group at the Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute, Barcelona, Spain, there are two main factors of the Mediterranean lifestyle associated with a reduced risk of both heart attack and stroke. These two factors are an increased consumption of both vegetables and nuts. This bowl contains both. Mangia Bene! Salute!
Recipe by Emily Honeycutt, 2016. © All Rights Reserved. www.emilyhoneycutt.com
H Schroder, J Salas-Salvado, M A Martinez-Gonzalez, M Fito, D Corella, R Estruch, E Ros. Baseline adherence to the Mediterranean diet and major cardiovascular events: Prevención con Dieta Mediterránea trial. JAMA Intern Med. 2014 Oct;174(10):1690-2.