Belly in Bliss

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With snow on the forecast for later this week and chilly temperatures descending already, warmth has been on my mind. This morning, after a leisurely start to the day, I sketched the idea pictured above and soon after found myself knee-deep in the smells of butternut and warm, starchy rice. (I would have loved to use wild rice for this, however I couldn’t find ours until just after I poured the white rice into the boiling water… of course)

These bowls offer wonderful ways to combine all sorts of flavors in one dish (which you know I love) and they provide elements of the major food groups: protein (hard-boiled egg), vegetables (butternut squash + onion + carrots + spinach), grain (rice) and fats (nuts).

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Ingredients:

  • 4 cups of water
  • 1 cup of rice
  • 1 T. coconut oil (or whatever fat you like to use–this just gives a more interesting hint of flavor than regular olive oil)
  • 1/2 cup butternut squash (cubed)
  • 1/4 cup onion (diced)
  • 1/4 cup carrots (diced)
  • 1 tsp. favorite spices (i used a little thyme and this West Indies spice mix we have)
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1/2 cup almonds (i used some indian spiced almonds we were given by a friend)
  • 1/2 cup cashews
  • 1 egg

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Preparation:

  • boil half the water (2 cups) and add rice to cook for about 25 minutes with heat on low
  • place coconut oil in a skillet and, once melted, toss onions and butternut squash with spices and let cook for about 5 minutes or until the squash is almost soft
  • slide this to one side of your skillet and place spinach on other
  • add in the carrots and combine with the squash mixture

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  • toss both squash and spinach on low heat until spinach has reduced in size and is thoroughly cooked
  • place desired amount of rice in the bottom of a bowl
  • use the same pot as the rice cooked in (less dishwashing!) to cook a hard-boil an egg with the remaining 2 cups of water for about 5 minutes (or less depending on how runny you like it)
  • scrape butternut mixture on top of rice on one side of the bowl and spinach onto the other
  • chop nuts until you like their size (I cut them into quarters) and sprinkle on top
  • place egg in cold water for about 30 seconds to cool and peel off the shell, cut in half and place both halves on top
  • complete your bowl with any additional toppings (see hint)

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300_0614  Hints:

  • if you have wild rice and wish to use that, just note that it takes a little longer to cook than white rice, so you may want to start it a bit before you begin preparing the rest of the dish
  • this is a great recipe to  shake up depending on what you have–any vegetable, nut, grain, and protein would be delicious
  • adding toppings such as bleu cheese and coconut shavings to this combination was delicious (the bleu cheese I used mainly on top of the squash because that is one of my favorite pairings of flavors, but be sure to not add too much cheese because it can easily take over that of the subtle squash) the coconut was great on all of it–not too flavorful, but a great way to add another layer of subtle flavoring

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With winter on its way and the season of food and celebration dawning, I hope you find warmth and pleasure in what you eat and who you eat with.

~comfort, nourishment, balance~

grazie

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Belly in Bliss

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