How's your eating going so far this year? Have you stuck to your intentions for healthier eating or need a reboot due to being swept away by Valentine's Day goodies?
I know where I've been residing this week and I'm recommitting to healthy eating right now by making more of these abundance bowl meals. I call them abundance bowls because they celebrate with marked simplicity the abundance and variety of nutrient-dense and delicious foods available to most of us. Much of my eating is composed of these uncomplicated and wholesome whole-food/real-food meals. Maybe you've seen these called Buddha bowls. The name doesn't really matter... as long as the goodness is there.
Some people wouldn't think of these as meals needing recipes but that's just the kind of food that people need to reclaim again - and CELEBRATE - as satisfying and nourishing and doable. I'm a busy mom and bowls like this are often what I make for lunch for myself and they are so easy that you can too. Feel free to use leftovers from things you've cooked the night before. Here, I've assumed you're starting from scratch, but I know that's not always the case. I encourage you to use what you have. But please make the Romesco sauce and freeze them in small containers (1 cup or smaller if it's just you eating it). They will make future Romesco Abundance Bowls that much easier.
Here's to not making things more complicated than they need to be. Here's to nourishing yourself from the inside out. Here's to always being one meal away from getting back on track.
Can I get a Halleluyah?!
Romesco Potato Chickpea Chard Abundance Bowl
gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian
Author: Lisa Cohen
1.5 lbs bag of small potatoes, each potato cut in half
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1-2 teaspoons olive oil
1-2 bunches of chard leaves (de-stemmed), washed and roughly chopped
1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
coarse salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed, warmed in a pan or microwave, if desired
Smoked paprika, to taste
Fresh Parsley, for garnish
Romesco sauce (recipe follows)
Roast the potatoes - Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place potatoes on a parchment-lined baking sheet and add 1-2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 teaspoon coarse salt, and 1/2 teaspoon freshly black pepper. Mix to coat the potatoes with the oil, salt, and pepper and roast for 20-25 minutes or until nicely browned. While these are in the oven proceed to the next step.
Sauté the greens - Heat a large sauté pan or skillet on medium heat. Add 1-2 teaspoons olive oil and garlic and sauce for 30 seconds, until garlic is fragrant. Add the torn chard leaves and a few pinches of coarse salt and sauté on low heat until chard begins to wilt, tossing frequently with tongs, about 5-10 minutes, making sure that the garlic doesn't burn. If you need to add some water to the pan because it's drying add, add it 1-2 tablespoons at a time. If you've freshly washed the chard leaves, you likely won't need to do this step. When finished, add freshly ground pepper, to taste.
Assemble abundance bowl - Place roasted potatoes, sautéed chard, and chickpeas in a bowl. Sprinkle the chickpeas with a little smoked paprika. Spoon 1-2 tablespoons of Romesco sauce in the center of the bowl and sprinkle with parsley.
Classic Romesco Sauce
Adapted from World Vegetarian by Madhur Jeffrey
2 medium onions, peeled but left whole
8 to 10 large garlic cloves, unpeeled
3 large very ripe tomatoes or a 28-ounce calf fire-roasted tomatoes, drained
3 dried ancho chilies
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
5 tablespoons blanched slivered almonds
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 3/4 teaspoons salt
- Turn on the broiler (I used my toaster oven). Spread the onions garlic, and tomatoes on a baking tray lined with aluminum foil.
- Broil 4 to 5 inches from the heat for 5 to 7 minutes, turning the onions, garlic, and tomatoes as the outsides char. The garlic will get done first. Remove the garlic cloves and continue for another 10 minutes or so until the onions and tomatoes are also browned on all sides. Remove the tomatoes at this stage.
- Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees and bake the onions for 25 to 35 minutes, or until they have softened all the way to the inside. Meanwhile, remove the stems and seeds of the ancho chilies by cutting the tops off and shaking out as many seeds as possible. During the last 2-3 minutes, add the almonds to toast with the oven ingredients until golden brown. Set aside to cool, then grind the almonds to a fine powder in a clean spice grinder.
- Put the chilies in a small pot along with the vinegar and 1/4 cup of water and bring to a boil. Cover the pot, turn the heat down to low, and simmer for 5 minutes, or until all the chiles are soft. Turn the heat off. Let the ancho mixture sit, covered, for another 5 minutes, or until the peppers are very soft. Cool slightly in the liquid. If you don't have a high power blender you'll want to remove the skin. If you have a BlendTec or Vitamix then don't worry about it... all will be blitzed to smoothness in the magic machine. Remove any seeds that are still clinging to the flesh.
- When the onions are very tender, remove them from the oven and discard the charred outer layer. Chop them coarsely. Peel the garlic cloves.
- Put the ancho-tomato mixture, onions, garlic, ground almonds, oil, leftover vinegar, if any, and salt into a blender and blend until smooth.
- Serve at room temperature or chilled.