Glorious Grains

Brown Rice and White Beans with Shiitakes and Spinach

Spinach Brown Rice 2 Robin Robertson

This homey pilaf is infinitely versatile. Instead of rice, you can make it with quinoa, wheat berries, or bulgur. You can also swap out the white beans for cooked lentils, black-eyed peas, or chopped seitan. Or add some heat with a minced jalapeño chile. Recipe from One-Dish Vegan © 2013 by Robin Robertson. Reprinted by permission of The Harvard Common Press.

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Rice-Stuffed Delicata Squashes

Rice-suffed delicata squashes

My husband certainly has a way with his vegetable garden. Each year there’s one or another crop that becomes, to put it politely, overabundant. The first year, it was tomatoes. The phrase, “too many tomatoes” was particularly resonant for me, as my overindulgence triggered an allergy (fortunately, temporary) resulting in itchy hives. The following year, the culprit was Swiss chard. Though mildly annoying at the time, my bewilderment over what to do with this profusion of greens led to my writing a book (my latest, Wild About Greens) on leafy greens of all sorts.

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Quinoa with Corn and Scallions

Quinoa pilaf with corn and scallions recipe

Quinoa and corn, embellished with lots of scallion, makes a simple and tasty side dish for everyday meals. What’s not to love about quinoa? It’s a powerhouse of nutrients, it cooks in 15 minutes, and its pleasantly offbeat flavor is most appealing. I try to use it often, and this quick preparation is the one I turn to often. It goes with just about anything and is also a nice stuffing for small pre-baked squashes like golden acorn. Photos by Hannah Kaminsky.

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Gingery Rice with Sweet Potatoes and Peas

Gingery rice with sweet potatoes and peas

I came across a classic Thai dish that combines white rice with white potatoes, and though it sounds too starchy, the seasonings and embellishments sounded appealing. So I took the general idea of this recipe and revved it up to include the two main ingredients’ more nourishing counterparts—brown rice and sweet potatoes. This may sound like an offbeat combination, but really, it works! It’s like sunshine on the dinner plate. You can also substitute quinoa or any other favorite grain for the rice. Serve with a simple tofu, tempeh, or bean dish and a salad. Adapted from Vegan Express.

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Quinoa with Cauliflower, Cranberries, and Nuts

Quinoa and cauliflower pilaf

This pilaf combines two companionable ingredients—cauliflower and quinoa. If you can plan ahead, having cooked quinoa and chopped cauliflower makes this dish a breeze to put together. Serve with a simple bean or lentil dish and a colorful salad.  more→

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Lemon Rice with Vegetables

lemon rice

If you’re bored of regular rice and curry meal, this variation is a must try. Lemon is a staple in my kitchen. Lemon flavored rice with vegetables is a good way of taking less carbs and more healthy vegetables. Just this rice and your choice of pickles or chutney is a complete meal. I usually have this with Ruchi South Indian pickle. Photo and recipe contributed by Abi Anandakumar, fromAmi’s Vegetarian Delicacies. more→

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Asian-Flavored Quinoa Wraps

Asian flavored quinoa wraps

Once you have the cooked quinoa on hand, these delectable Asian-flavored wraps come together very quickly. Photos by Rachael Braun. Recipe contributed by Wendy Polisi, reprinted from Cooking Quinoa.  more→

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Quinoa, Corn, and Bean Salad

Quinoa and corn salad detail

Quinoa, corn, and beans join forces with avocado to make a sturdy salad with southwestern flavors. Do try it with the optional jícama when this crispy veggie is in season; it adds a nice touch of texture and flavor. It’s a perfect main-dish salad, paired with a simple soup or Easy Quesadillas or Soft Tacos.

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