This week I have been strictly sticking to the 21 Day Fix portion control meal plan – which mean EAT MORE VEGGIES and EAT MORE PROTEIN! This delicious stew has been a lunch staple all week – so much veggie goodness!!!
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, diced
2 cups cubed butternut squash
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 (or more) teaspoon ground cumin
1 (or more) teaspoon ground coriander
½ teaspoon red chile flakes
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
splash of white wine vinegar (1-2 tablespoons)
14 oz. can diced tomatoes
32 oz. vegetable broth
½ cup dry quinoa (or 1.5 cups cooked quinoa)
generous amounts of salt & pepper
a few big handfuls of chopped kale
In a large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions, salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until they become translucent. Add the butternut squash cubes, another few pinches of salt, and stir again.
Let the butternut squash cook for a few minutes, then add the garlic, cumin, coriander, paprika and chile flakes. Stir, then add a splash of white wine vinegar to deglaze the bottom of the pan. Add the tomatoes, broth and quinoa. Cover and simmer until the butternut squash is tender and the quinoa is cooked through (about 40 minutes). Halfway through, I like to taste and adjust seasonings. Add additional spices if you like.
When the soup is nearly done, add in a few handfuls of chopped kale. Stir and let it cook until wilted (about 5 minutes more). Taste, and adjust seasonings again.
Store leftover soup in the fridge for 4-5 days or freeze.
One of my New Year’s Resolutions (besides the one about actually posting to my blog!) is all about eating. It’s so easy to stand in front of your pantry and pick the fastest 20 minute meal that you make all the time. I decided after one such “default” meal, that I would start working a little more on meal planning. I’m not yet willing to make vast weekly menus, with everything planned to a T – plans stress me out too much! But what I will do, is sit with my favourite cookbooks and my coffee on Saturday morning, make a list of 5-6 recipes to try during the week, and add any special ingredients to my grocery list. It especially makes me sad when all these awesome veggies start going by in the crisper drawer, so this week I did it, and made some really great recipes!
My favourite triumph this week:
Indian Lentil-Cauliflower Soup:
This one is so warm, with super rich curry flavours…
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 yellow onion, diced
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1-2 tablespoons curry powder, to taste
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
6 cups vegetable broth
1 cup uncooked red lentils, rinsed and drained (I used green lentils)
1 medium cauliflower, chopped into bite-size florets
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced
2 large handfuls baby spinach
1/4 teaspoon salt
freshly ground pepper
chopped cilantro for serving
In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for 5-6 minutes, until translucent. Stir in the ginger, curry powder, coriander, and cumin and sauté for 2 minutes, until fragrant. Add the broth and lentils and stir to combine. Bring the mixture to a low boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes more. Stir in the cauliflower and sweet potato. Cover and reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer for 20-25 minutes, until the cauliflower and sweet potato are tender. Season with the salt and pepper, and add more curry powder if desired. Stir in the spinach and cook until wilted. Ladle the soup into bowls and top with cilantro, if desired. (Serves 4)
My only deviation was we didn’t have any spinach, so I crumbled in 2 handfuls of frozen basil leaves – definitely a yummy addition!