This month’s recipe comes from the book ‘Inspired’, a collection of recipes donated by local and national chefs in aid of Stroud Women’s Refuge. All profits from the book go to the refuge – and with International Women’s Day on 8th March, it’s a great excuse for a new cookbook!
This recipe is donated by Maria-Carin Gala, a Stroud-based chef and author of Lick Your Plate, recipes that are plant-based, gluten free, delicious and nutritious. She runs catering company Gala’s Organic Kitchen, offering online and in person cookery classes and catering packages.
1 cup quinoa
2-3 small beetroots
1 ripe avocado
half cup walnuts, dry roasted and chopped
1 bunch fresh mint, chopped
Coconut or olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste
2 tbsp olive oil
Juice & rind of 1 lemon
1 tsp wholegrain mustard (optional)
Salt & pepper
Soak the quinoa overnight for better digestion. You can also cook it straight from the packet but it helps to give it a good washing under the sieve so that its bitter coating is lessened.
Preheat the oven to 180C. Make sure you have an organic lemon as otherwise they are sprayed with nasty chemicals, or grab one from your lemon tree! Put on some music, pour yourself a glass of wine and focus.
Wash and chop the beetroots into small wedges, coat in a bit of oil, massage with salt, love and bake until tender, approximately 30 minutes.
Strain the quinoa, add fresh water - only about 5mm to cover the quinoa, bring to a boil with a pinch of salt and cook for 15-20 minutes. When cooked leave the lid on for a few minutes as this guarantees extra fluffiness. Then fluff with a fork and allow to cool somewhat.
Mix the dressing ingredients and combine with everything. Make sure there is enough oomph in it so adjust the intensity of the flavours with more oil, salt and lemon but be careful and don't go overboard too quickly - take your time adding extras. You want it just right!
This is a great accompaniment to all sorts of mains, or just by itself - it won't let you down!
Top Tip: you can, of course, go wild and roast sweet potato instead of beetroot, add coriander instead of mint, add toasted chopped almonds instead of walnuts, add pomegranate seeds or goji berries, the world is your oyster!
Inspired was created by Carl Benton of Personal Best in aid of Stroud Women’s Refuge. But this isn’t just another charity cookbook – the book is beautifully designed and will inspire you to cook thanks to delicious recipes from the likes of renowned national and local chefs such as Tom Kerridge, Tom Herbert of Hobb’s House Bakery, Mark Payne of the Bell at Sapperton, Erin Baker of The Natural Cookery School, Ols Halas of Giffords Circus Sauce, Diana Henry, Allegra McEvedy of Leon Restaurants and lots more…
Order online or pick up a copy in a number of local retail outlets.
Maria-Carin Gala’s approach to cooking is rooted in ingredients that make you feel good. That means no gluten and no refined sugar – just pure, plant-based goodness. It is Maria’s personal experience that led her to discover this wholesome way of eating is and the evidence she presents is compelling. To find out more and to order a copy of her book, ‘Lick Your Plate’, visit Gala’s Organic Kitchen.
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