This lunch has been one of my favorites lately because it's so simple, refreshing, and surprisingly filling, not to mention outstandingly delicious! I just grill up some pita bread, asparagus and zucchini on my panini press (that's right- it's also a grill!) and serve it along with some baby carrots and a big dollop of red pepper hummus. I've been rather obsessed with red pepper hummus lately- it's a nice change for the class (but still equally yummy) garlic or plain hummus.
To add on to all of the chickpea-y goodness, I also reheated a chickpea stew I made a few months ago and froze the leftovers since it made so much! I actually adapted a recipe from Rachael Ray to make this. That's right, I actually found one of her recipes that doesn't involve tons of meat and cheese! I remember I was sick in bed and incredibly bored one day waaaaaaay back in the fall and began watching the Rachael Ray show (you can imagine how bored I was!). I guess I picked the right day to watch it though, because she was making a vegetarian stew! It seemed pretty good and was actually vegan! I actually recommend making this stew a week or so before you plan on actually serving it, because the leftovers that I froze, defrosted, and reheated had a much better texture and flavor then when I originally had made it. So, here's my version of Rachael Ray's Curried Winter Vegetable Stoup:
3 T. olive oil
1 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
2 Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced into about one-inch chunks
1 large red bell pepper, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 1/2 c. vegetable stock
3-4 T. curry paste, hot or mild depending on your preference
1/2 c. mango chutney
3 15 oz. cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 28 oz. can fire-roasted tomatoes
Heat oil in a large pot over medium. Add the cauliflower and potatoes and cook for 5 minutes. Turn the heat up to medium-high and add the red bell pepper, onion, garlic, salt and pepper, adding a little more oil if necessary the mixture seems dry. Continue to cook for 5 more minutes, stirring occasionally. Add 2 1/2 c. stock and bring up to a simmer. While the stoup is coming up to a simmer, combine 1 cup of the stock with the curry paste and the mango chutney in a food processor or blender and puree until smooth. Add the curry mixture to the pot along with the chickpeas and tomatoes. Season with some salt and pepper, bring the mixture up to a bubble and simmer for 10-15 minutes, until the potatoes and veggies are nice and tender and the flavors have melded together. Serve with pita bread or pita chips.
37th Birthday Weekend, Day 2!
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