Sometimes a recipe just sneaks up and completely surprises you. After eating the first mouthful of this dish, I literally stopped and looked down at the dish just to take it all in, I was thrilled with it's unexpected loveliness!
I had spent the morning baking sweet treats. I had made Chocolate M&M cookies based on this recipe as MJ's 'sweet plate' contribution to the last day of term activity at his kinder.
I also made these cupcakes using my red velvet cupcakes with mascarpone icing as a farewell to a dear friend successfully chasing her dreams over in Spain - so proud of her!
After a bit of tasting and finger licking and a little more tasting and sneaking of M&M's, I needed something lean and green for lunch.
I had just pinned Spiced Spinach with Walnuts from 101 cookbooks the night before and it ticked all of the boxes. I had leeks in the fridge (that I had intended to use for a soup) and a big bag of spinach, so I had the right ingredients. It was also quick and easy and it was healthy and full of greens.
I didn't really pick the dish based on the potential taste. I'm not sure why I underestimated the recipe, as I can only dream of being half the cook Heidi Swanson is, but still I made it with little expectation.
But then I tasted it and it was amazing!
I haven't cooked with leeks very much but they add a great creaminess and serving it over brown rice gave it the consistency of a risotto. I also added mushroom to help make it a full meal in itself. I also changed up the spices a little.
The mushrooms added bite and the spinach gave great colour and nutrition. The spice is perfect; it gives a little heat and perfectly complements the vegetables.
So if you are looking for a healthy, quick and hearty lunch or dinner, I highly recommend this. You could easily add chicken if you need to convince a 'meat and three veg' eater of it's merits!
Spinach, leek and mushroom rice bowl
adapted from 101 Cookbook's Spiced Spinach with Walnuts
1 cup cooked brown rice
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
2 large leeks, trimmed & thinly sliced
10 mushrooms, sliced
3/4 teaspoon chilli flakes, or more to taste
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
10 fresh mint leaves
4 massive handfuls of baby spinach
1 lemon, cut into wedges
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted
1/2 cup crumbled feta
In a large fry pan heat the oil over medium-high heat. Stir in the salt and leeks, and cook for 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook for a further 5 minutes until the leeks are tender and just barely starting to brown.
Stir in the chilli flakes, cumin, turmeric, and oregano, and cook for another 30 seconds or so. Add the mint leaves and the spinach, in batches if needed, stirring constantly.
Cook until the spinach begins to wilt, and brightens - just a minute or so.
Squeeze the juice of one of the lemon wedges into the spinach, stir well, taste, and adjust with more salt if necessary. Serve over brown rice topped with the walnuts and crumbled cheese
Linking up with A Mummy Too's
Happy eating Dani