Usually, when I come home from a long trip, I go on a mini-cleanse. 26 days of eating restaurant food makes me feel bloated and salty, and in dire need of some organ purification. There are tons of unhealthy and downright insane cleanses floating around out there, so I was planning on sharing with you my instructions on how to do it safely and healthily. However, I had no immediate need for the cleanse after this trip, as I got home with food poisoning and my digestive tract was all set, so I'll leave my healthy cleanse instructions for another post.
So today, I bring you an easy and healthy lunch that uses only a few ingredients but satisfies your belly and colon alike. Quinoa is an extremely healthy grain with a high protein content (12-18%) which, unlike most of its relatives, contains a balanced set of essential amino acids, making it an unusually complete food. This recipe would work be equally delicious with broccoli.
Caramelized Brussels Sprouts with Quinoa
ingredients (for one):
1/4 C quinoa
1 garlic clove, smashed
7-8 small Brussels sprouts, washed and halved
salt & pepper
1 lemon wedge
Parmesan cheese (leave out to make the dish vegan)
In a small pot, mix the 1/4 C quinoa, smashed garlic clove, and equal-ish parts of water and vegetable broth (you could use chicken, or even all water). Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until the liquid is absorbed and the quinoa is done. Cooking time and liquid amount will vary, but a good rule of thumb is too cook like you would rice.
In a small bowl, pour a generous glug of olive oil over the halved Brussels sprouts to coat. Season liberally with salt and pepper. In a skillet, heat another glug of olive oil to medium/medium-low heat. Place the Brussels sprouts flat side down in the hot oil, add just a SPLASH of veggie broth so they don't burn before they cook, and cover. Let cook for 5-6 minutes (you can pierce one to test for done-ness), then uncover and let the broth cook off, letting the sprouts caramelize to a deep crusty goodness. Flip and caramelize the round side as well. At the very end, squeeze a lemon wedge over the top.
Serve with quinoa and a dusting of parmesan cheese. Enjoy!