green garden sprouted quinoa tabbouleh with lemon-zested chickpeas

12th September 2013

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How to make use of all this abundance in my gracious garden?

Mint, parsley, coriander, beans, zucchini, celery and cucumbers = tabbouleh

With a few creative extras…

I chose to make this with sprouted quinoa which gives it a delicious, crunchy, nutty flavour.  Quinoa is known as a grain, but it is actually a seed.  It is an energy-rich food that delivers heaps of fibre and protein but very little fat  is easy to digest and gluten-free.  It is a complete protein, meaning that it includes all nine essential amino acids.  It is rich in nutrients and a very good source of manganese, magnesium, iron, copper and phosphorous.

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sprouting quinoa

1 cup quinoa = 2 cup sprouted 

Rinse 1 cup of quinoa until the water runs clear.  Allow to sit for 15 minutes and rinse again –  this process helps in taking out the bitterness.  Soak the quinoa for 2 – 5 hours in a wide-mouthed glass jar (The quinoa will sprout quickly as it absorbs moisture really well).  Drain the water, rinse and place in a cool, dark area, placing a cheesecloth or screen over it, holding it in place with a rubber band.  As I prefer the quinoa with very short tails, I  sprouted overnight.  Once sprouted, rinse well and allow to sit to drain the water away.  If not using straight away, place sealed in the fridge.

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lemon-zested chickpeas

ingredients :

2 cups of pre-soaked chickpeas (I tend to soak a whole bag overnight and divide into two cup measurements ready to use in the freezer)

water for boiling

a pinch of baking soda

for the marinade :

zest and juice of two lemons

¼ cup good tasting olive oil

salt and pepper, to taste

Place chickpeas in boiling water and allow to simmer for two hours or until the chickpeas are soft.  Drain off the water and as much of the skins as possible.  Place in a bowl with the rest of the ingredients and allow to marinate for at least an hour. Adjust the marinade to taste.

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a green garden sprouted quinoa tabbouleh

Serves 6

ingredients :

2 cups sprouted quinoa/cracked wheat/sprouted lentils

1½ cups parsley, finely chopped, stalks and all

1½ cups coriander, finely chopped, stalks and all

⅓ cup finely chopped mint

2 stalks celery, finely chopped

10 small green beans

1 small-medium zucchini

2 cucumbers, deseeded and chopped finely

for the dressing :

4 Tblsp good quality olive oil

2 Tblsp honey

juice and rind of a lemon (not the white pith, as this is very bitter)

salt and pepper to taste

¼ cup toasted almonds, pine or walnuts

preparation :

Lightly dry-roast the nuts in a small skillet.  Set aside to cool.

Halve the zucchini length-wise and lightly steam the beans and zucchini, so they still have a bit of a crunch.  Watch the zucchini as it steams much quicker.  I take them out a few minutes earlier than the beans. (If I use very small zucchinis from the garden, I leave them raw).   Rinse under cold water and set aside to cool and dry.  Scoop out the seeds of the zucchini and finely chop the flesh with the beans.  Mix with the rest of the Tabbouleh ingredients in a big salad bowl.  Mix the salad dressing together and toss through the Tabbouleh.  Sprinkle over the toasted nuts.  This salad is best to sit for an hour for the flavours to come together.  Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Serve with the lemon-zested chickpeas.

Lately, I have been mixing the chickpeas in with the tabbouleh salad – just before serving.  The moist softness of the chickpeas balances the dry crunchiness of the sprouted quinoa.

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Goodness shared from Stacey

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