Monday, 1 October 2012

Rice with Delicata Squash and Kale

With fall activities in full swing our calendar is becoming increasingly full.  Between swimming lessons, hockey and youth group commitments we are often eating in short windows of time before heading off to an activity.  It is during these busy times that I will try to have quick meals at the ready so there is no stress attached to meal times.  I really believe in nourishing the little athletes as much as possible. Don accuses me of being a little fanatical about this topic, but I figure there is no harm in trying to give our kids whatever advantage may come from a well fueled body.  I can't stand the thought of them being in the water or on the ice and wanting to perform but having their body fail them. 

Keeping a well fed busy family, is no easy feat.  My first step is to plan the weekly menu and prep as many ingredients as possible in advance.  This particular recipe is a great one to be prepped with the added bonus of using leftovers to make a second meal for later in the week or popped in the freezer for another day.  Cooking the rice and squash ahead of time means I only need to reheat and plunk an egg on top at meal time.  The patties made with the leftovers are delicious both warm and room temperature. 
We've been eating them topped with tomato jam, but they would be tasty with a salsa or Greek yogurt on top too.  A few notes about the recipe.  You could easily substitute a different squash or even sweet potatoes for the delicata.  Same goes for the rice- use whatever grain you like: quinoa, barley, or farro. The rice blend I used is a Lundberg mix.  The patties will keep in the fridge for a few days both uncooked or fully cooked.  We enjoyed taking them on our lunch or as a snack on the way to the arena.

Rice with Delicata Squash and Kale

adapted from Inquiring Chef
2 cups rice blend
2 Tbsp oil
1 delicata squash chopped (about 4cups)
1 bunch kale chopped (about 3 cups)
1 shallot chopped
salt and pepper
4 eggs

Cook rice according to package directions.  Heat oil in large pot and add the squash and shallot with salt and pepper.  Cook on medium heat for about 5-7min, stirring occasionally.  Add kale and cook approximately 5min more.
To serve, top a bed of rice with vegetable mixture and a fried or poached egg.  Enjoy!

Crispy Rice, Kale, Squash and Bean Cakes

adapted from Real Simple
3 cups cooked rice
3 cups cooked kale and squash, chopped slightly smaller than above recipe
1 can white kidney beans, mashed or pureed
2 eggs
3/4 cup grated Romano cheese
salt, pepper
1 Tbsp oil

In a large bowl, mix rice, vegetables, beans, eggs, cheese, salt and pepper.  Form into patties, about 1/3 cup each in size.  Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Cook in batches, patties until browned and cooked throughout, about 5min per side.  Top with salsa, yogurt or tomato jam.

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