Gingery Broccoli Stir-Fry [vegan]

Bring on the broccoli! Using minmal ingredients and packed with nutrients this vegan stir-fry is the perfect quick weekday lunch or dinner.

How simple is too simple to call a dish a recipe? Judging from my own experience I’m a lot more likely to try a recipe the simpler it is. Running to the store for two or three ingredients some of which I might not use again soon [don’t tell me you didn’t have those age-old spices sitting around in your cupboard!].

Cravings are good ways to create new recipes. This dish was inspired by a sudden craving for broccoli which I’d actually consider a constant one along with this current obsession. With just a few more basic ingrdients this simple lunch came about. Pre-cooking grains is a serious timesaver, dried spices [while fresh are preferable] are always great to keep on hand and cannd legumes add some vegan protein in no time. The preparation here is almost too simple …

Broccoli stir-fry_bulgur_2

What’s in a recipe, really? In my opinion – and I’m not just saying this to make myself feel better  [you, too ;)] – every time you prepare food at home it’s a potential recipe. Unless you’re just opening a can and heating it up or mixing PB2 with water and selling it as your own original creation – really?! But you get my gist.  The reason I decided to share this particular dish is that while decidedly simpler than some of my other recent lunches it was all the more satisfying.

A grain, a green, a bean – the perfect vegan meal once again. I’m intuitively going for a different take on this basic formula pretty much every day. And why not? It’s covering all the bases and simple enough to stir up with whatever you happen to have on hand. I used bulgur as my side but if you and/or your stomach prefer gluten-free options go for those – this is a dish for everyone.

Broccoli stir-fry_bulgur_1

Gingery Broccoli Stir-Fry

1 small red onion, chopped
1 clove of garlic, minced

2 cups of broccoli, chopped into small florets, stalks sliced thinly
1/2 tbsp soy sauce [sub gluten-free kind if necessary]
1/4-1/2 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp chili flakes
Pepper to taste
A handful of mushrooms, sliced

1/3 cup of chickpeas

Grain of choice to serve* [I used bulgur cooked with some coconut milk]

  1. Start by sautéing the onion until lightly browned. Add the garlic and fry for another minute.
  2. Add the broccoli, stir well to combine, add a few tablespoons of water and cover the pot. Let cook for around five minutes or until desired level of ‘softness’.
  3. Add the ginger, soy sauce, chili flakes and pepper to taste.
  4. Stir in the chickpeas and bulgur to heat through.**

*Use your favourite gluten-free side to make this suitable for your diet.

** I did this after taking the pictures.

Broccoli stir-fry_bulgur_4

I’m joining  Meatless Mondays, Savouring Saturdays, Gluten-Free Wednesdays, Recipe of the Week, Tasty Tuesdays, Healthy Vegan Friday and Real Food Friday.

 

Happiness-inducing today: Talking to my brother on the phone for the first time in weeks and finding out about all the good news in his life.

Stay in touch!

Twitter: @MissPolkadot21
Pinterest: MissPolkadot21
Bloglovin’: Let’s get living

 

 

 

When life hands you [avocado]

Sometimes we make plans for life. And sometimes life decides not to work out as planned – in a very good way. This is what happened to me in terms of food during the past days. What did I plan? After last week’s post on incorporating more grains into my diet I’d planned on “investigating” a bit more in that field.

Granted, I hadn’t had an elaborate plan but more of an idea of wanting to keep experimenting with different grains and amounts of them. But as hinted above life seemed to have another idea. Enter: the add-more-fat edition of WIAW [meant in a very kind way]. Thanks as always to Jenn for hosting!

WIAW GOES GREEN

[Note: I felt like all the green foods to come in today’s post deserved that logo once more :)]

Actually, I hadn’t intented on giving avocado another try just yet. The brownies were nice but I hadn’t dared avocado on its own and that’s exactly what I feel I “have to” in order to truly repair my relationship with food. When I was at the health food store to pick up a jar of my favourite almond butter I spied some perfect avocados. Perfect because they weren’t only just the right state of ripeness but also not too huge. Because admittedly, I had more than one avocado go moldy due to me not eating it fast enough. Most of those I can get at the supermarket are just too intimidatingly huge for me. Certainly not for serious avocado admirers but not being there yet I didn’t want one of them. Long story short: I picked up one of those perfectly-sized avocados and let it all happen.

Zucchini pasta with lentil chili and avocado sauce

Zucchini pasta with lentil chili and avocado sauce

What happened were very good and satisfying meals. Day by day I upped the amount of avocado just a little and never cut down on my nut butter consumption. Yes, it was and still is scary but I’ll keep going and see what happens.

Lazy-girl Chana masala – as in: totally unauthentical Indian food. Accompanied by some broccoli and – yes – more mashed avocado.

Lazy-girl Chana masala – as in: totally unauthentical Indian food. Accompanied by some broccoli and more mashed avocado.

And I’ll confess I cheated. Cheated on almond butter, that is. Let me explain: I’d spotted hazelnut butter on offer in the health food store chain I frequent for my almond butter only. While I’d been intrigued to  try it earlier already the price and – not lying here – the higher calorie and fat content had kept me from it. Luckily, curiosity got the best of me and … I sparked a new food obsession. Tastewise it reminded me of the healthier organic “Nutella” my mum used to buy for our family when I was younger. That organic version has a decidedly higher hazelnut content and I’ve always preferred it to the real thing. If you’re ever in Germany do yourself a favour and pick up a jar of Samba spread at a health food store :).

Addicted.

Addicted.

What I noticed when upping the amount of fat in my diet was that I felt even more satisfied after my meals. That’s not say I’d eaten a low-fat diet before but at least my lunches were most definitely lacking. Where does that leave me at? Admittedly, I’m not sure. I know many people in the blog world state themselves to be either a fat, carb or protein person – meaning the macro balance they’ve found works best for them. Right now, I don’t find myself belonging to any of these groups [yet?] and that’s okay. One week I might need more grainy carbs, the other I’ll go for more fat or protein.  Who knows what’s to come in my next WIAW post J?!

One thing I’ll never go without is dessert, though. Peanut mug brownies after finally figuring out the right ratios and perfect “baking” time resulting in a fantastic brownie.

Needless to say this was topped with hazelnut butter post-picture.

Needless to say this was topped with hazelnut butter post-picture.

Happiness inducing today: Sharing the excitement of a very good friend moving into her first own apartment.

Did you ever have life interfere with your original plans in a very good way? [Not necessarily food-related only!]

Do you consider yourself a fat/carb/protein person?

What was happiness inducing for you today so far?

WIAW: No need to be green for being green

Remember how last week I said it wasn’t easy being green? Well, thinking about it Jenn’s rules they might not exactly require me to eat green only to be green enough for this month’s motto. Did I confuse you enough already ;)? Let’s dive right into this week’s What I ate Wednesday and you’ll find out what I mean in a pinch. Thanks for hosting, Jenn!

WIAW GOES GREEN

A little cheating bending the rules is always allowed, right? So while my meals might not all have included green they packed in some of my favourite fruit and vegetables.

No, I'm still not getting tired of blueberry baked oats.

No, I’m still not getting tired of blueberry baked oats.

It’s safe to say these are a favourite breakfast of mine. While I got a few requests I’ve been hesitating from posting a recipe because it’s incredibly … simple.

My fondness of broccoli should be well know by now and I’m sure at least this girl approves of yet another broccoli-fied meal.

Meet my new friend Alfredo ;).

Meet my new friend Alfredo.

Yet more proof simple recipes can turn out surprisingly delicious. Never having had Alfredo sauce before and with silken tofu in need to be used I whipped up Happy Herbivore’s vegan version.

Creamy, rich and using few ingredients it was the perfect go-to white sauce with freshly grated nutmeg making the dish. Definitely one I’ll repeat.

With longer days of classes and our cafeteria serving less-than-appealing food I like to pack my own lunches. A simple yet flavourful dish that tastes way better than it looks:

Beats cafeteria food any day.

Beats cafeteria food any day.

This came about when I started getting wild with my spice collection and turned out to be a winner. Let me know if you’re in need of the recipe for a quick and easy lunch.

Caring is sharing after all so I didn’t let my friends go hungry during class, either. Bringing in these bad boys clearly wasn’t green – but sometimes a little sugar is all you need during a boring lecture, right?!

Much needed brain fuel for hungry students.

Much needed brain fuel for hungry students.

Happy Wednesday!

 

Are you a meal repeater? Which are your go-to dishes?

How did you green up your meals lately? Do you agree with my little cheat :D?