Our local Oriental Market is an excellent source of baby bok choy, a cruciferous vegetable. Sold fresh in large bags, usually weighing 2 to 3 pounds. I normally steam these little green stalks of goodness with some fresh garlic and serve as a side dish.
One day I was looking for a new way to prepare baby bok choy in an easy one-pot meal. What other ingredients would work to boost up the protein, fill us up and provide a variety of textures? Beans and seeds (sunflower and quinoa): excellent sources of protein and fiber. Add in some sundried tomatoes, balsamic vinegar and spices for a rich, tangy flavor.
I wanted the baby bok choy to be almost cooked, the green leaves wilted but the stalk ends with a bit of a crunch. By waiting until the quinoa mixture was cooked, and then adding the baby bok choy, that crunchy texture was achieved. The creamy sauce gets trapped in the stalk end crevices. Creamy. Crunchy. Yummy.
Here's a glimpse of me in the kitchen. I like experimenting and making up new dishes on an almost daily basis. My inspiration is based on the available ingredients. Sometimes the best meals are when my ingredients are limited and I have to get creative to get the flavor I'm after.
Substitutions are okay by me, as long as they're healthy choices. Baby bok choy could be substituted for any other greens, or broccoli. Quinoa could have been brown rice, and the sunflower seeds could have been cashews.
Don’t be put off by my long ingredient list. It really is easy to throw everything in the pot and let it simmer into a scrumptious meal. Mix up the creamy, beany sauce in a high speed blender, (I use my Nutribullet blender), while the bok choy is steaming. You'll have this meal served up no time.
This creamy quinoa with baby bok choy definitely qualifies as “stick to your ribs.” The goal for us is to eat delicious and nutritious food. I hope you enjoy this dish as much as we do.
Creamy Quinoa with Baby Bok Choy - gluten and dairy free
An easy one pot meal that blends a creamy sauce with chewy quinoa and crunchy steamed baby bok choy.
- 1-1/4 cup vegetable broth, no salt added
- 1/2 cup quinoa, (I use Trader's Joe's tricolor), rinsed
- 4 sundried tomatoes (unsulphured), cut into thin slivers
- 1/2 small onion diced
- 4 cloves of garlic, smashed then slivered
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 tablespoons Balsamic vinegar
- 1-1/2 lbs baby bok choy, keep ends intact cut into 1" pieces
- 1 cup white beans
- 2 ounces raw, hulled unsalted sunflower seeds
- Juice from 1/2 a lemon
- 1/2 cup of water
- Add broth, quinoa, sundried tomatoes, onion, garlic, dry spices and balsamic vinegar into a large stockpot.
- Bring to a boil.
- Cover pot and simmer on low heat for 15 minutes.
- Add in chopped baby bok choy.
- Cover and continue simmering for 10 minutes. Add a bit more liquid, if needed, to prevent sticking.
- Blend beans, sunflower seeds, lemon juice and water in a high speed blender until creamy.
- Add sauce to pot, stir to evenly coat mixture.
- Simmer another 5 minutes. Bok choy ends should still have some crunch, test with a fork to see that it easily punctures.
- Remove pot from heat and serve.
Yield: 2 servingsPrep Time: 00 hrs. 05 mins.
Cook time: 00 hrs. 30 mins.
Total time: 35 mins.Tags: gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian