One of the main reasons I started this blog, was to collect quick, but healthy gluten free vegetarian weekday dinners. This is not the quickest of all dinners, but it does rank up there in terms of not-so-complicated. I already told you how much love green beans and how I only eat them when they are in season, so when they are in season, I will eat them often. Funny thing, I started reading David Lebovitz The Sweet Life in Paris on the subway on the way home, and about two minutes before I went into the supermarket, he mused about green beans and how cutting off their ends is very French. Apparently part of the people think it’s due to radioactivity migrating towards the ends, and the other part of the population does so, because the ends stick in your mouth. Well, pardon me, Mr. Lebovitz, it may very well be a European thing? I have always cut off their ends (I always thought they must be hard and not fun to eat?), and my Bolivian grandmother did it, too. So maybe, it’s an everywhere-but-the-United-States-thing and not necessarily French? It doesn’t really matter, I thought it was a funny coincidence and probably encouraged me in buying a bag of green beans, even though I was already holding a very big broccoli head in my other hand.At home, I immediately began cleaning the beans and taking off their stems. I thought of taking a picture of the pile, but at closer thought it stuck me as gross. As I was cleaning and chopping away, a visitor arrived.
Yoshi is a greenfinch and has been living with us since August 2010. I found him on the middle of the street on a windy day, a car had just passed and he was scared and lost. After reassuring myself that his parents were definitely nowhere near, I took him home in a box that I carefully put into my bag. My husband and I then fed him until he was weaned. This took a while. By the time he was eating on his own, winter had arrived and he had become too accustomed to being around us. He is part of our family and we love him very much. He loves all things green and fresh, so we always have to share. Same goes for grains and fruit. Another funny thing: greenfinches live on a vegetarian diet (he hated the insect food we gave him as a baby), the colour of his feathers match that of my eye and it also goes very well with the way our apartment is decorated. Talk about heaven sent…
Yoshi’s self-esteem did definitely not grow in proportion to his size, when he wants something he will demand it. He may even fight you for it (if you let him). After patiently posing for a portrait with me and watching me take a picture of the goods, he took off with a piece of green bean. It was the size of his head and I had left on the table by mistake after taking a picture of the cleaned and de-ended green beans. Yoshi begun eating his piece of grean beean on the recliner, and lo-and-behold, as it always happens when you bit off more than you can chew, the piece of green bean fell down behind the cushions. I know the picture is not in proper focus, but I really get a kick out of the fact that I caught his surprised expression. I mean, how dare this delicious piece of green bean just bounce away like that, no warning or anything?
So on to today’s recipe. I love whole grain rice (when I can get a kind that I like, not every kind is tasty, so don’t be discouraged if you have tried brown rice before and not liked it, try again with a different brand!) probably as much as I love green beans, especially with roasted garlic and well – crispy tofu is always a treat! So those are the three things I had for dinner.
200g crispy tofu (see my post on how to prepare it here)
1 cup whole grain rice
1 tsp vegetable oil
1 clove of garlic
salt to taste
2,5 cups of water
In a separate pot, heat the vegetable oil, add the rice and the garlic and roast until a part of both is roasted golden brown. Add the water, salt to taste and let simmer for about thirty to thirty-five minutes until al dente.
While the rice is boiling, make the crispy tofu.
Boil the green beans until they are tender (about fifteen minutes). Drain. Add the tiny piece of butter if you are so inclined.
When all the components of the meal are done, arrange them on a plate and enjoy! You can prepare this meal ahead of time. I am not very keen on re-heated vegetables, but since it’s the part of the meal that takes the least time to prepare, go ahead and cook your rice and crisp your tofu on Sunday evening and simply boil your beans (or any other lovely vegetable such as broccoli) the day of. Ta-dah, yummy meal!
Thank you for stopping by and smacznego!