I love recipes that are filling, fresh. and delicious… and that came from absolutely nowhere. This recipe is another that I whipped up one night when I only had a few items left in the fridge to cook with – a tomato, half a zucchini, some onion, chicken thighs, and bag of quinoa in the pantry.
It’s fresh and warm all at once – the brightness of tomato and zucchini pair well with the curried chicken and the rustic, earthiness of quinoa. Leave out the chicken for a vegan option! Quinoa is actually closer akin to lentils or beans than it is grains, packing a healthy punch of protein. It’s also loaded with iron, making it a great choice for vegetarians and vegans alike.
As I was only cooking for myself and my toddler, this recipe is “small”, compared to my usual ones. I found this still made a good amount of food however. I ate my fill, and still had about two portions leftover.
1/2 cup quinoa (cook to directions)
1/2 large zucchini, diced
2 plum tomatoes, diced (I didn’t remove the seeds, do this if it is your preference though)
2 chicken thighs, cubed
1/2 red onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1-tbl. curry powder
1/2 tbl. garlic powder
Salt & Pepper to taste
1-tsp. fresh lemon juice
- Cook quinoa according to directions, and set aside. Season chicken with spices, toss well, and saute over high heat until starting to crisp up. (For veg. option – skip this, and season your zucchini instead).
- Add onion and garlic to pan, saute for another 1-2 minutes, or until onions begin to become translucent. You don’t want the garlic to brown too much, however.
- Add zucchini and tomatoes. Mix well, and allow to cook for another 1-2 minutes. Again, you don’t want these softer vegetables to cook down too much, both tend to disappear quickly if you overcook them. We’re really looking just to heat them through. Once the zucchini starts to get translucent, turn the burner off.
- Mix your quinoa in, and only keep on the (off) burner long enough to rewarm the quinoa. Lightly sprinkle with fresh lemon juice, add salt/pepper as desired, and serve immediately.
I truly loved this meal, it felt light yet was very filling. It goes really nicely with some toasted naan, maybe even a glass of white wine (Gewurztraminer, or Traminette, anyone?). It freezes really well, so it makes a great freezer meal as well if you are looking to do some cooking in advanced. Just heat and eat when thawed!