I’ve been keeping a running list for a while now of lunches I really want to make (and eat). Featured prominently on that list for some time now is the whole grain, healthy and happy Buddha Bowl. The components of a Buddha Bowl can vary, but the basic foundation includes some sort of grain, vegetables, beans or nuts, and a sauce.
Spring time is such a great time for the vegetables for this lunch: at the farmer’s market on Saturday, I snagged broccolini (which, if you were wondering, is not baby broccoli, but a hybrid vegetable of broccoli and gai-lan), rapini (or broccoli raab), more asparagus, and more pea shoots.
Then came the challenging part. We now live in a metropolitan area that has a Trader Joe’s, a Whole Foods, and a New Season Market, in addition to three or four Fred Meyer’s, a Safeway, and a Win Co. Not a single one ever has every ingredient we need (at a price that’s reasonable). In an effort to avoid spending all weekend shopping, we tried to buy everything we needed at Trader Joe’s, but for the life of me, I couldn’t find the one ingredient I wanted to make a tahini-based dressing for my Buddha bowl – the tahini. Knowing that the week ahead was going to be busy, I went with the path of least resistance and bought Trader Joe’s peanut satay sauce. I’m not always a fan of pre-made sauces like this, but this one is good with the flavors in the bowl.
I also bought an interesting grain mix: it’s got Israeli couscous, orzo (so technically a grain and pasta mix), quinoa, and lentils. I threw in some avocado, chickpeas, and some cashews, and sprinkled the whole thing with a little bit of pink Himalayan salt.
Spring Green Buddha Bowl
4 – 5 cups of a grain or grain mix (Israeli couscous works well, as does quinoa, brown rice, or other similar grain or grain mix)
4 cups mixed greens chopped in small pieces (broccolini, broccoli, rapini, asparagus, chard, etc.)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 avocado, diced
1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
½ cup cashews
4 – 8 tablespoons of peanut satay or similar pre-made sauce
Follow the directions on the package to cook the grains. Divide cooled grains between four bowls.
In a non-stick or cast iron pan, heat the olive oil. Sauté the greens until they are cooked to your liking. Divide the greens between the four bowls.
Divide the avocado, chickpeas and cashews and distribute between the bowls. Add the sauce and combine. Sprinkle with salt.
These hold up well in the refrigerator so can be made early on in the week for lunch all week long.