When looking for something quick, easy and healthy each week to make at home, I do find myself gravitating towards Middle Eastern inspired recipes. I love to use olive oil, hummus, the earthy yet spicy taste of cumin in a dish and creamy tahini. These types of recipes can be hearty and have creamy textures to them without a lot of dairy, and often without meat. I came across this recipe from Rebel Recipes for a Squash Tagine with Cauliflower Rice and Herb Based Tahini dressing. A tagine is the traditional clay cooking pot this sort of dish is cooked in. I do not own one. However, the recipe sounds delicious, and I can get all the ingredients at Trader Joe’s. Here are the groceries I bought at Trader Joe’s. I did not take a picture of the groceries for this dish alone, but I figured it might be helpful to see some of the items. Dried apricots, Harissa sauce, pre-chopped butternut squash, riced cauliflower, haricots verts, eggplant, lemon, onion, garbanzo beans, mint and sea salt are part of this recipe. Other items for this recipe I already had at home. What’s great about this recipe? This recipe uses a variety of produce. Many of us struggle to get produce into our daily diets. Much of the produce can be purchased pre-chopped, which is a major time saver. This recipe also uses a variety of spices instead of excess salt, which gives it more flavor but makes it friendly for those watching their sodium intake. This recipe also makes 4 servings, so you can eat it for multiple meals. For those who are plant based, this recipe has no meat or dairy. It also happens to be gluten-free. You could add meat, chicken or fish on the side if you desire. You could also add an extra can of chickpeas for added plant based protein if you are feeding more than two people. Moroccan Style Butternut Squash With Chickpeas, Cauliflower Rice and Mint Tahini Dressing A plant-based Moroccan tagine inspired dish infused with earthy spices, fresh produce and sweet dried apricots. 2 tbsp olive oil 2 medium onions, chopped 1 tsp cumin powder 1 tsp coriander 1/2 teaspoon chili powder 1 tsp cinnamon 1/2 tsp ginger powder 5 cloves garlic sliced 2 tbsp tomato paste 1 tbsp Harissa sauce 1 package chopped butternut squash 1 medium eggplant, chopped 1 cup haricots verts (green beans), chopped 1 large carrot, chopped 20 organic dried apricots, chopped 4 cups vegetable stock Juice 1/2 lemon juice 1 tsp kosher salt 1/2 tsp black pepper 1 can organic chickpeas drained FOR THE TAHINI DRESSING 1/2 cup fresh mint, chopped 2 tbsp tahini (large tablespoons) 2-3 garlic cloves 1 lemon, juice of 1/2 tsp Sea Salt (optional) 1/2 tsp Black pepper 1/2 cup water Add the olive oil to a large frying pan and heat to low/medium then add the chopped onion. Fry your onion for aprox 10 minutes until soft and browning Add in the garlic and spices and stir for a few minutes until fragrant. Add the tomato paste, vegetable stock, apricots and the chopped vegetables. Simmer for 20 minutes or until the squash is tender. While the dish is cooking, make the dressing. Add the ingredients to a blender. If you want a thicker dressing, add another tbsp. of tahini. Set aside. When the dish is done, add the chickpeas, lemon juice, salt and pepper to season. Top with fresh mint and drizzle with the tahini dressing.
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