I’m a great cook when not under pressure and the worst, unintentional pyromaniac when expectations point a
gun carrot at my head, demanding to be fed.
As a result, my best meals are usually made spontaneously and intuitively, without much fuss or previous planning or even my serious camera nearby to capture these moments before devouring them. Thank god for my phone, by now graciously integrated with the rest of my organs, and for Instagram, where I can report quickly, share my OCD passion for food, and satisfy my immediate need for approval.
Here’s the longer, step-by-step process of what might be — not to exaggerate — one of the best lunch ideas in the history of mankind. Meatless, vegan, gluten-free, crowd-pleaser, brown rice food-porn.
But first, a few words about brown rice and why you should eat it more often:
Because it is a whole food, composed of 80% complex carbohydrates, it takes your body longer to digest it, so it doesn’t give you the bipolar blood sugar highs & lows you experience when consuming refined foods — but instead, it provides you with grounded energy throughout the day.
If able, always have a jar filled with high quality organic brown rice in your kitchen cabinets.
Benefits of Brown Rice:
– It contains the highest amount of B vitamins of all grains.
– It is a good source of iron, vitamin E and amino acids.
– It’s high in fiber and low in sodium.
– It generates energy.
– It alleviates diarrhea.
– It promotes good digestion.
– It’s alleviates mental depression.
– It quenches thirst.
– It feeds your inner hungry beast.
It contains more phytic acid than most grains — a substance that if untreated, it may interfere with mineral absorption. But this can be easily prevented by just soaking the rice for a few hours before cooking it. Soaking rice (and other grains) also produces beneficial digestive enzymes and it increases its nutritional superpowers.
As for the recipe…take note. It’s the most versatile combination, so you can tweak it any way it suits you and it will still taste like your last meal. It’s also the most basic recipe for brown rice. It only looks complicated.
Turmeric Brown Rice & Quinoa Patties with Smoked Tahini Gravy.
– 1 cup of brown rice (serves 2 really hungry monsters) or 3 smaller people & 1 ghost
– 2 cups of water
– 1 tsp turmeric powder
– Sea or Himalayan salt
– Rinse the rice with cool water & strain.
– Place all the ingredients in a pot, cover it and bring it to a boil.
– Reduce heat and let it simmer for 45-60 minutes, until soft.
– Make sure you stick around and check it 10 minutes or so before the suggested time is up, just in case the house is burning. Add more water and leave longer, if needed, until the grains acquire your favorite consistency.
– Once ready, remove from heat and let it be for 10 minutes before you start attacking it with a fork.
QUINOA (OR ANY OTHER) VEGAN PATTIES
I did not make these, but someone else did. I just bought them. You can use any vegan patties (organic Non-GMO soy, rice or any other preferably gluten-free option you can find at the health food store). Another great alternative and one of my favorite protein sources is tempeh. I guess veggie burgers could work too (worst case scenario) — but they tend to be too heavy when combined with the rice. A simpler option of one-two ingredients is preferred.
– Dehydrated or pre-cooked patties or any patty-looking vegan thing with little to no gluten, or tempeh
– Tamari or organic soy sauce
– 1/2 onion
– 2 tsp coconut oil
– 1-2 garlic powder (optional)
– If the patties come dry, follow the instructions on the package and soak them as indicated. It usually only takes about 5 minutes.
– If already soaked or ready to eat (like tempeh or others), place the coconut oil in a frying pan, chop half an onion & saute until golden. Add patties (or tempeh) and cook for 5 min or less. Make sure the onion doesn’t burn. Caramelized, not carbonized.
– Pour the tamari or soy sauce in and and stir, until they all catch it and absorb it. Remove from heat.
– 4 tbsp tahini
– 1/2 glass of water
– 1 garlic clove
– 1 tsp smoked paprika (or any other healthy food smoke flavor)
– 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
– 1-2 tsps lemon juice (go by taste)
– dash of sea salt
– I use the same tahini base for different sauces. The only thing that changes is the texture and a few different ingredients.
– Blend all the ingredients until smooth (stick blender preferred).
– Add more water if too thick.
– Season to taste.
OPTIONAL: For extra enzymes, top with a handful of bitter greens (pictured: arugula – a goat’s favorite) & squeeze some lemon on it.
AND / OR
Serve with a massive salad, like this leafy green feast (optional: fresh onions + walnuts) drizzled with sesame oil & balsamic vinegar and sprinkled with Himalayan salt & nutritional yeast.
Or like this other leafy green beast with carrots, walnuts & fresh grated fennel + your favorite dressing.
BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE!
If you’re not a hungry monster and don’t get to devour all your rice in one sitting, you can recycle your leftovers into another dish.
I stir fried my next-day rice with 2 tsps coconut oil + dash of paprika powder, sprinkled with wakame flakes (nori or dulse flakes are my two other favorites) and topped it with 1/2 “scrambled” avocado. Damnit, I forgot to add a dash of freshly ground black pepper. That changes everything.
Squeeze a lemon’s heart on it (vitamin C facilitates mineral absorption) and hello — you have another meal!
Well, aren’t you resourceful?
Stay tuned for more delirious, quick ‘n’ easy green for busy people.
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