Quick Quinoa – Easy Vegan Bake
Do you ever have one of those days where you realise you’re hungry, and it’s already late, and you think you don’t have the ingredients there to make the dinner you imagined?
Story of my life, but this is a challenge I accept and enjoy, making healthy, vegan dinners from whatever I can find. My point is, you can make tasty nutritious, vegan dinners easily, that are cheap, quick and satisfying.
Many people have a misconception that eating a vegan / plant based diet is going to be expensive, when for me it’s the opposite!
Basing my diet on whole grains means cooking and shopping are simple and stress free. Incorporating wholegrains into your diet as a staple food means your diet will be rich in fibre, B vitamins and energy, and leaves plenty of opportunity to make endless meal options using fruits, vegetables and grains for filling nutritious meals
Quinoa has become a popular fad lately, pushing the price up, however I found a 300g bag for just over 2 euro in a supermarket which isn’t bad value. Quinoa has a higher protein content than rice, and I find it to be a lighter option for a change.
This recipe serves 2
1 vegetable stock cube/ 1 tbs vegetable bouillon- dissolved in 400ml hot water (use a ratio of 2:1 water to grain when cooking quinoa)
300g mixed mushrooms sliced – I used chestnut and button mushrooms
1 banana shallot finely diced
1 red onion finely diced
50g sundried tomatoes sliced – I used pre-soaked ones from a jar
1 tsp oregano
Fresh black pepper
For the topping
50g nuts of choice- I used flaked almonds
Pinch of oregano
Vegan cheese 30g grated – again this is optional I had some VBites cheddar style left over
Bring quinoa and stock to the boil in a saucepan, cover and simmer for 30 minutes on a low to medium heat, stirring regularly.
Sauté the onion and shallot in a pan, I used a tbs of water for this recipe,use oil if your prefer, I added another tbs of water after 5 minutes. Allows the onions to become translucent.
Add the mushrooms to the pan, cover with a lid to allow the mushrooms to cook in their own liquid for 7 minutes, stirring.
Add the oregano and sundried tomatoes to the pan.
When the quinoa is cooked remove from the heat, fluff up with a fork, stir in the vegetables from the pan. Season to taste with black pepper.
Spoon the mixture into an oven proof dish, I used a pie dish. Sprinkle with the nuts, vegan cheese, and oregano.
Bake at gas 4/ 180*C for 7minutes, or until the cheese has melted, taking care not to burn the nuts.
This dish is also great eaten cold, I made a salad the next day, adding baby spinach, rocket, spring onion and diced cucumber and had it for lunch!