After a recent encore viewing of Forks Over Knives, several of us were inspired to cook some plant-based foods last night. On the menu were spicy peas, sweet corn salad with cucumbers and tomatoes, and this grilled corn, zucchini, and bell pepper salad with black beans and barley. Thanks for Oh She Glows for this recipe. If you dice instead of chop the vegetables, you can have more of a relish/salsa for chips. Because everything is better on a chip.
- 3 bell peppers (any color–I used a few beautiful purple peppers that turned an unappetizing gray after grilling)
- 2 zucchinis, sliced in half lengthwise
- 6 ears of corn, husk removed
- 1.5-2 cups cooked black beans (or one 15oz can)
- 1/2 cup uncooked wheatberries (I used barley since that was available)
- 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup fresh lime juice (2 limes) I’m sure lemon works too
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 small garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tbsp minced fresh cilantro (or herb of choice)
- 1 tsp maple syrup (or other sweetener)
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
1. Preheat the grill over medium heat. When it’s ready add the corn, rotating every few minutes. After about 10 minutes, add the zucchini and bell peppers. No need to chop the peppers, you can leave them whole. Grill for another 10 minutes, rotating frequently, until lightly charred.
2. Meanwhile, cook your grains on the stovetop (if using them) according to package directions. In a small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients and adjust to taste.
3. When vegetables are done on the grill, cool, and then remove corn and chop the peppers and zucchini. Mix the drained and rinsed beans, grains, dressing, and vegetables together in a large bowl. Add a generous amount of salt and pepper, to taste. Will keep for a few days in the fridge.
This is a basic tabbouleh recipe that does not require a lot of ingredients. If you are looking for more of a meal, check out my tabbouleh with chicken and tahini recipe here. This week, we got a lot of parsley from the CSA, and tabbouleh is my favorite way to use it all up. Thanks to Simply Recipes for the original recipe. I revised the amounts when I made it myself. Feel free to increase the herbs and decrease the bulgur or the other way around, depending on the ratio you prefer. (I like more herbs when eating it with pita, more bulgur when eating it as a stand-alone salad). Do you have another favorite recipe that highlights parsley? Send it along!
- 1 cup water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup bulgur wheat
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Juice from 2 lemons
- 5-6 Roma or plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped (I used about a cup of mixed tomatoes, including cherry tomatoes–but I left the seeds in the little guys)
- 2 scallions, chopped, including the greens
- 1 1/2-2 cups parsley, chopped
- 3/4 cup fresh mint leaves, chopped
- Place the bulgur in a medium sized bowl. Bring water and the teaspoon of salt to a boil, pour it over the bulgur. Let sit for 30 minutes.
- In a large bowl, add the olive oil, lemon juice, bulgur and mix well. Add in all the other ingredients and mix to combine.
- Taste the tabbouleh, and add more salt, olive oil or more lemon juice to taste. Let marinate for at least 30 minutes before serving. Will keep chilled for several days.
Thanks to Local Roots NYC CSA for posting this recipe from Kitchn. Here is my adapted version of it. Clearly, I’m on a lemon yogurt kick. I made the farro a day in advance to cut the prep time tonight. With that prep out of the way, the salad took me about 15 minutes to make.
- 1 cup farro
- 2 cups water
- 1/2 pound peas, shelled
- 2 baby leeks, white and light green parts only, thoroughly washed (I like to soak it them in a bowl of water a few times)
- 3 tablespoons plain yogurt (I used Stonyfield Organic Low Fat)
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- black pepper
Last week, Fishkill Farms was offering pasture-raised lamb at the Carroll Gardens Farmers Market. As relatively novice meat eaters, we were unsure what to order. We went with the lamb sausage. We picked it up this morning, and made this salad this evening. I got the recipe from the Whole Foods app, and it’s spicy and delicious!
- 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 1 1/3 cups pearl couscous (also known as Israeli or Middle Eastern couscous)
- 1 3/4 cups water
- Zest and juice from 1 large lemon
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4 lamb merguez or other lamb sausage links
- 2 yellow bell peppers, seeded and quartered
- 2 red bell peppers, seeded and quartered
- 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add couscous and cook, stirring frequently, until toasted, about 5 minutes. Stir in water and salt and bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer until water is absorbed and couscous is just tender, 10 to 12 minutes.
2. While couscous cooks, whisk together lemon zest, juice, remaining 1/2 cup olive oil, garlic and salt and pepper to taste. Remove 2 tablespoons dressing and set aside for basting.
3. Preheat a grill to medium-high heat. Grill sausages and peppers, basting with the reserved 2 tablespoons dressing and turning frequently. When sausage is cooked through and peppers are tender, 10 to 15 minutes, remove from grill. Slice sausage into 1/2-inch-thick rounds and peppers into bite-size pieces. Put in a bowl with couscous. Toss with olive oil-lemon dressing and parsley. Taste and adjust seasoning. Serve warm or at room temperature.
This recipe comes from Food and Wine’s March 2012 issue. The kale, carrots, and garlic came from the Carroll Garden’s farmer’s market.
- 1 cup long-grain brown rice
- 1 cup red quinoa
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 small onion, finely diced
- 1 carrot, sliced crosswise 1/4 inch thick
- 1/4 pound shiitake mushrooms, stems discarded and caps thinly sliced
- 1 small zucchini, halved lengthwise and sliced crosswise 1/4 inch thick
- 1 head of broccoli—stems peeled and sliced into coins, heads cut into small florets
- One 12-ounce bunch kale, large stems discarded
- 1/4 cup tahini, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons warm water
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 ripe avocado, cut into 1/2-inch dice
- 1 cup mung bean sprouts (I omitted these)
- In a medium saucepan, cover the brown rice with 2 inches of water and bring to a boil. Cover and cook over low heat until the rice is just tender, about 40 minutes. Drain and return the rice to the saucepan; keep covered.
- Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, combine the quinoa with 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Cover the saucepan and simmer over low heat until the quinoa is tender and all of the water has been absorbed, 20 minutes.
- In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil. Add the onion and cook over moderate heat until translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the carrot and cook until starting to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the shiitake, cover and cook until tender, about 4 minutes. Add the zucchini, season with salt and cook, stirring a few times, until tender, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
- Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil to the skillet. Add the broccoli, cover and cook over moderate heat, stirring a few times, until deep green, 5 minutes. Add the kale, cover and cook, stirring a few times, until the broccoli and kale are just tender, 4 minutes. Season with salt. Stir in the other vegetables.
- In a small bowl, whisk the tahini with the lemon juice, garlic, warm water and crushed red pepper. Season with salt.
- Transfer the brown rice and quinoa to bowls. Top with the cooked vegetables, diced avocado and bean sprouts (if using). Serve, passing the tahini sauce at the table.
This recipe from Cooking Light’s September, 2011 magazine was great for dinner and then even better for lunch the next day. I’ll admit that my “drizzle” turned into more of a thicker sauce. It may not have looked as pretty, but it tasted delicious. For those who missed the memo: yes, I am eating meat. I can hardly believe it still myself. To make this vegetarian, use chickpeas instead of chicken. The recipe called for chicken thighs. I got this chicken at Forager’s in DUMBO, where they get all their meat locally. They also only have chiken breasts, so I used those instead.
- 1 1/4 cups water
- 1 cup uncooked bulgur, rinsed and drained
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
- 1/2 pound skinless, boneless chicken thighs
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3 cups chopped tomato
- 1 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1 cup chopped fresh mint
- 1 cup chopped green onions
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1/4 cup tahini (roasted sesame seed paste)
- 1/4 cup plain 2% reduced-fat Greek yogurt
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon water
1. Combine 1 1/4 cups water, 1 cup bulgur, 1 tablespoon olive oil, and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer for 10 minutes (do not stir) or until the liquid almost evaporates. Remove from heat; fluff with a fork. Place bulgur in a medium bowl; let stand 10 minutes.
2. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken to pan; sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt and black pepper. Sauté for 4 minutes on each side or until done; shred chicken. Combine bulgur, chicken, tomato, and next 4 ingredients (through garlic) in a large bowl; toss gently.
3. Combine remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, tahini, and remaining ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Drizzle over salad.
I like to pack my lunch for work, but get tired of sandwiches. As an easy alternative, I will sometimes make a hearty salad to have a few bites of as part of dinner, and then take some to go for lunch the next day. Thanks to Food and Wine magazine’s August 2011 issue for this recipe. You can substitute pretty much any large grain for the Israeli couscous (such as freekah or coarse bulgur). Do you have any other creative lunch ideas? Post them below or send me a message!
- 6 cups packed arugula (6 ounces)
- 2 cups Israeli couscous (12 ounces)
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 pints small tomatoes (cherry or grape), halved
- 4 yellow or orange tomatoes, cut into 1-inch dice
- Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add the 6 cups of arugula and blanch for 10 seconds. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the arugula to a colander. Rinse under cold water to stop the cooking, then drain thoroughly.
- Add the Israeli couscous to the boiling water and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until it is al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain the couscous and spread it out on a large baking sheet. Drizzle lightly with olive oil and toss to prevent it from clumping. Let the couscous cool to room temperature.
- In a small skillet, toast the pine nuts over moderate heat, tossing, until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Let cool.
- Squeeze the excess water from the blanched arugula and coarsely chop it. Transfer the arugula to a food processor. Add the pine nuts, garlic, cheese, and 1/2 cup olive oil and process until the pine nuts are finely chopped. Season the arugula pesto with salt and pepper.
- Transfer the couscous to a large serving bowl and stir in the arugula pesto. Gently fold in the tomatoes.
While you have the feta and mint ready, here is another summer salad. This one was adapted from Peter Berley’s class. He used farro (spelt) but I had quinoa on hand. Also, he used golden beets–so that the color would not bleed into the rest of the salad. I only had red beets, so I did just added the beets on top at the end, rather than mixing them in with the cucumbers and quinoa.
- 3-4 beets, cooked, peeled, and diced
Beet Preparation Note (can be done ahead of time and stored in fridge) I roasted in an aluminum foil pouch for about an hour at 400 degrees, testing for done-ness when a fork glided easily through the beets. Depending on the size, it takes about an hour or more. Then, I allowed them to cool. Once cool, I used a paper towel to remove the skins from the beets, and diced.
- 1 cup quinoa, cooked (click here for cooking instructions-see steps 1 and 2)
- 1 large cucumber, peeled, seeded, and diced
- 8 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
- 2 tablespoons chopped dill
- 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
- 1 lemon
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons shallot, finely chopped
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- fresh ground black pepper
- Combine the vinaigrette ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth.
- In a large bowl, combine quinoa, cucumbers and vinaigrette. Mix well. Top with beets. Refrigerate until cold.
- Add the feta, dill, and parsley to the salad. Season with extra lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste. Top with beets.
Here is another great grain salad from Peter Berley’s Go With The Grain cooking class at The Brooklyn Kitchen.
In the class, we used freekah instead of bulgur. You can also substitute Israeli couscous. This salad can be served hot, warm, or cold.
1 cup medium or coarse bulgur wheat
1/3 teaspoon of salt
One 14 ounce can chickpeas, drained
1 medium red onion, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 bay leaves, halved
1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon smoked or sweet paprika
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. In a small saucepan over high heat, bring 1 1/4 cups of water to a boil. Stir in the bulgur and 1/2 teaspoon salt, cover the pan, and simmer for 1 minute. Take the pan off the heat and let rest, covered, until all water has been absorbed, about 20 minutes.
3. In an 8 to 10-inch oven-proof saute pan over medium heat, stir together the rest of the ingredients and season with more salt. When the chickpeas begin to sizzle, transfer the pan to the oven. Roast for 20 minutes, stirring halfway through.
4. Remove and discard the bay leaves, and stir the bulgur into the chickpeas. Season with salt to taste, and serve hot, warm, or at room temperature.
Every month, I get a package of fresh organic fruit as part of the fruit of the month club. (Thanks, mom and dad!) This month, I received a giant box of sweet and juicy nectarines. I made a fruit salad with some of them, mixed with blueberries and raspberries from the CSA. I also wanted to incorporate the nectarines into a savory salad as well. This salad is protein-packed, vegan, and gluten free. A triple threat.
Grain salads can be a little bit more work than green salads because you need to cook the grains. I recommend making a large batch of grains ahead of time, and keeping it in the fridge. Then you have ready-to-go grains which you can use for salads throughout the week.
1 cup quinoa
1 2/3 cups water
1/3 cup chopped cilantro
1/3 cup chopped parsley
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup slivered almonds
1/4 cup pepitas (green pumpkin seeds)
2 ripe nectarines, cut in 1/2 inch cubes
1/4 cup raisins
zest of 2 limes
juice of 2 limes
2 tsp honey
2 tsp rice vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp paprika
2 tablespoons olive oil
additional salt and pepper to taste
1. Let quinoa soak in a bowl of water for 15 minutes to 1 hour. Rinse thoroughly and allow to drain. (This step takes out the bitter flavor of quinoa. If your quinoa is pre-rinsed, you can skip this step.)
2. Boil 1 2/3 cups water and then add quinoa. Bring to a boil again, and then reduce heat to a simmer and cover. Cook for 20 minutes, or until the “halo” separates from the seed and all of the water has been absorbed. Spread quinoa out on a baking sheet, and allow to cool completely.
3. Toast the almonds and pumpkin seeds on a skillet over medium heat, tossing occasionally. They are ready when the almonds start to turn golden, and the green pepitas begin to turn brown .Watch closely, as they will both burn quickly. Remove from heat and let cool.
4. Mix the quinoa with the rest of the salad ingredients.
5. To make the dressing, combine all the ingredients through paprika. Then, slowly whisk in olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste.
6. Toss dressing with the salad, and serve room temperature or chilled.