This combo has been one of my go-to fall and winter dinners the past couple of years. It is really simple but satisfying. I like to get the quinoa and sweet potatoes started first, so I can make the kale while the rest is cooking. I always add a generous amount of garlic to everything, so feel free to omit it if that’s not your jam. The quinoa is really the only part of this dinner where measurements (kind of) matter, so just use your best judgement for the rest (this page is a good reference if you have never cooked quinoa before). I use a lot of garlic and pepper for everything and start with a few shakes of each spice for the kale (adjust based on smell/taste while cooking and your personal preferences). This meal rocks because it has unprocessed, plant-based sources of protein (quinoa) and iron (kale). Take that, the man!
Ingredients: Quinoa, Vegetable bouillon cubes, Diced garlic
1. Rinse quinoa in a strainer (1 cup of uncooked quinoa will yield about 4 servings) before placing in a pot with water. Use 1 1/2 cups of water for each cup of quinoa.
2. Bring the water and quinoa to a boil. Put half a vegetable bouillon cube into the pot for each cup of water and stir to dissolve.
3. Turn heat down to low, cover, and simmer for about 12-15 minutes, until water is absorbed.
4. Fluff with a fork and stir in raw garlic if you want to ward off vampires and colds.
Easy Oven Sweet Potatoes
Ingredients: 1 or more sweet potatoes, Diced Garlic, Olive oil, Salt and black pepper
1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
2. Chop sweet potato(es) into 1-inch cubes.
3. In a mixing bowl, combine garlic, sweet potato, and just enough olive oil to lightly coat the mixture. Add a sprinkle of salt and a generous amount of pepper.
4. Transfer mixture to a baking sheet and bake in the oven for about 15 minutes, turning over halfway through baking.
TIP: you can microwave your sweet potato prior to chopping to cut down on baking time. Just poke holes in the potato with a fork, wrap in a paper towel, and microwave for about a minute. Prepare according to directions above but check after 10 minutes in the oven rather than 15 to see if it’s done.
Lemon Ginger Kale
Ingredients: Kale, Lemon juice, Olive oil, Ground ginger, Diced garlic and onion, Cumin or curry powder
1. Rinse, de-stem, and chop the kale.
2. Put enough olive oil in a pan to sautee the onion and garlic. Sautee for 1-2 minutes, until the onion starts getting soft.
3. Add as much ginger as you want (you can always add more later) and a couple shakes of cumin or curry powder if you want it to be a bit spicier. Stir and cook with the onion and garlic for a couple minutes.
4. Add about half of the chopped kale to the pan along with a few splashes of lemon juice. Stir until kale has wilted a bit, then add the rest of the kale.
5. Continue to stir until the kale is soft and bright green, adding a bit more lemon juice and ginger as the kale cooks down (this shouldn’t take too long, maybe a 2-3 minutes. You can add a little water to steam the kale if it needs help cooking).
6. Turn off heat and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
Because this meal is potentially full of the garlic, I felt this song was appropriate. Plus, Antsy Pants and root vegetables just make you feel warm and fuzzy on a cold winter night, don’t you think?