In the interests of trying to shed some of that early lockdown weight gain, we’ve been trying to eat more healthily of late. I’ve always been a fan of Opie’s, the company that produces the best very pickled walnuts and stem ginger – a must for Christmas feasting. I’ve been trying to make some cupboard space by using up the last of my supplies from last Christmas and these two recipes I’ve chosen for you are really delicious and very easy. With greengrocers having stayed open during the lockdown, and the farmers’ market continuing, as well as checking out some home delivery services for you, I seem to have ended up with a rather full veg drawer!
The vegan Buddha Bowl recipe can easily be adapted to include whatever you have that needs using up! For non-vegans, some cooked meat, fish or a hard-boiled egg will add protein if you don’t have (or like) the tofu, and those packs of ready-cooked rice, lentils or quinoa are a great store cupboard standby. The risotto – well, what can I say? I adore butternut squash and it marries so well with a hint of ginger. And with the weather being so upside down at the moment, it’s a quick and delicious supper dish.
Prep time: 10 minutes
120g cooked brown rice
1 Tin of chickpeas, drained
1tsp Harissa spice
4 Opies Pickled walnuts, sliced
1 Avocado peeled and stoned
1 block of Tofu
2tsp soy sauce
1 medium courgette, peeled into ribbons using a potato peeler
Squeeze of lemon juice
50g Edamame beans
10 cherry tomatoes, halved
Handful of fresh spinach
1 Sweet potato peeled and thinly sliced
2tbsp olive oil
¼ tsp chilli flakes
1-2 tbsp water
1 garlic clove crushed
Brush the sweet potato with the olive oil and either cook on a griddle pan or under a hot grill.
In a frying pan dry fry, the chickpeas in the harissa spice, leave until needed.
For the tofu, marinade in the soy sauce, then cut into cubes and fry in a hot pan with a little olive oil until it crisps up a little.
For the courgette, toss with a little olive oil and a squeeze of lemon juice.
For the dressing, quite simply mix the ingredients to form a pourable sauce. You may need to add a little more water.
So now you can assemble your Buddha bowl. Take a large, low sided bowl or plate.
Divide the rice on the base of each plate. Then in sections start adding the ingredients, the chickpeas, the tofu, sweet potato, edame beans, spinach, courgette, cherry tomatoes, pickled walnuts and finally the cress. Drizzle over the sauce and enjoy this super healthy bowl of goodness!
Spiced Butternut Squash Risotto With Stem Ginger
A quick and easy recipe.
Serves 2 Prep time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes
2 red chillies, finely chopped
200g butternut squash, chopped
1 tbsp freshly grated ginger
1 bunch spring onions, cut into rings
¾ cup short grain rice
3-4 cups of vegetable stock
2 tbsp butter
Salt & pepper
30g Opies Stem Ginger in Syrup, chopped
In a saucepan, melt the butter and then add the white part of the spring onions, butternut squash, chopped chillies and ginger. Sauté for about 4 minutes.
Now add the rice. Mix well until well coated. Then add 1 and a half cups of stock. Mix well and let it cook on a slow simmer. Continue adding the rest of the stock in ½ cups until the rice is cooked but still has a little bite. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Mix the green parts of the spring onion a few minutes before serving, reserving some for garnish.
Drizzle with ginger syrup (from the jar) to taste.