Paleo and Vegan: Vegan Bowls
It’s a Thing!
Not knowing what to call this recipe, I’ve landed on the name vegan bowls. Basically, vegan bowl night is when we set out various cooked and raw vegetables, a carbohydrate and some toppings and people make their own meal. You probably do something like this in your home. If not, maybe our recent vegan bowl night will inspire you to prepare this meal during Advent or anytime.
When I made this meal earlier this week, I had several veggies in the refrigerator drawer that needed eating. We had beets that needed roasting, yellow and zucchini squash that needed sautéing and left- over edamame that needed finishing. While the veggies were prepping, I cooked up a skillet of quinoa. We had a pile of aging arugula that needed to be eaten as well. For the fish eaters, we had a piece of leftover snapper to set on top.
Here’s how I made the beets: I peeled four beets and cut them into cubes. Then, drizzled the cubes with avocado oil and sprinkled them with salt and pepper. Next, I placed them into a 400 degree oven for about 30 minutes.
To make the squash: I cut large slices of squash and sautéed them until crisp-tender in avocado oil, garlic salt and pepper.
To make the quinoa: I first sautéed about a cup of quinoa in avocado oil for 4 – 5 minutes allowing the grains to pop and get a little browned. Then, I poured vegetable broth over the quinoa and stirred the whole business while I turned the heat down to low simmer. I cooked the grains for about 15 minutes until the grains were softened.
Next, I set out the arugula salad, heated the edamame and arranged several bottles of flavored vinegars and olive oil on the kitchen island.
40 minutes is what it took to prepare all these vegan bowl elements! I called the troops to come for dinner and they dug in to a warm, savory comforting meal.
It’s fun to have special Christmas bowls for these Advent meals. I found some festive bowls at an estate sale recently and setting those out for vegan bowl night creates a special mood and anticipation for Nativity. As we each create our bowl, there is light conversation and laughter. Everyone in the family comes to the kitchen ready to catch up from a long day of school, sports and work.
There are probably a thousand variations you could make to this recipe, as many variations as there are vegetables and carbs. Sometimes, we use brown or white rice. Sometimes, I make a peanut sauce or a teriyaki sauce to go on top. The best part: This meal has a high rating at my house because each person makes their own bowl.
I hope these ideas inspire you to create your own vegan bowl creations during the season.