Beans and greens are a low cost, nutrient rich, flavor packed meal. They are easy to make and easy to love. Sandy could eat beans and greens for every meal, everyday. I found a recipe for red beans with kale and quinoa in the Engine 2 book and Sandy whipped it up. Just between us, I wasn’t really that jazzed because beans and grains have never been my favorite combo. It is like the quintessential vegetarian food that you must love when you sign on to be veg and I wasn’t that into it….until the other night.
This classic dish has been revamped and is worth some adoration. The flavor of the beans is layered and rich while the greens are still al dente. The quinoa added a heft to the meal without taking away from the amazing flavor of the beans and greens. I can see why this would be a staple of all those who love good food that is amazingly healthy and easy to prepare. I’m in.
Red Beans & Kale over Quinoa
From the Engine 2 Diet
4 3/4 C water
2 C quinoa, rinsed in a mesh sieve
1 onion, chopped (we used about an 1/8 C of leeks finely chopped)
2 bay leaves
1 clove garlic, minced
2 green bell peppers, seeded and chopped
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 cans red kidney beans, rinsed and drained (we used red beans that were more like pintos because we had them on hand)
1 bunch kale, rinsed and coarsely chopped (Sandy wilted these in a bit of water with a tbsp of liquid aminos and dash of garlic powder)
Make it Happen:
Cooking the quinoa.
Bring 3 3/4 C of water to a boil. Add the rinsed quinoa, stir once and cover. Cook on medium heat for 25 minutes (ours took a little less). If any water remains, cook uncovered for a few minutes longer. The quinoa should not be soggy. Remove from heat and let the quinoa sit covered for 10 minutes. Fluff gently with fork.
Cooking the beans.
Saute the onion and bay leaves on medium heat in a sprayed sauce pan for 5 minutes, until the onions are translucent. Add the garlic and bell peppers and cook for 5 minutes, until the pepper soften. Add the thyme, vinegar, beans and remaining 1 cup of water, and cook on low heat for 5 minutes, until broth thickens. You can speed this process by mashing the beans a few times with a potato masher. (this tip was really helpful).
Cooking the kale:
Place coarsely chopped kale with 1/4 C of water in a large covered pot on medium heat. Cook the greens for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. (we added the liquid aminos and garlic powder for added flavor).
Serve quinoa in a bowl, make a kale nest and spoon the beans over the top. Admire momentarily then enjoy your handcrafted bowl of energy and joy producing food.
Have a delicious day.
Tags: compassionate eating, dairy free, Engine 2 Diet, going veg, plant based diet, plant strong, Rip Esselstyn, trying vegan, trying vegetarian, vegan, vegan challenge, vegan entree, vegan experience, vegan transition, vegan wannabe, vegetarian recipe