Light Quinoa and Avocado Tabbouleh Verrines

As a teenager and young adult I was anything but comfortable with myself.

I’d cry at the thought of being left alone and avoided as many silent moments as possible.

I guess I was never taught how to appreciate my own personal value and how to build a relationship with me.

After years of fear, I decided enough was enough and began to appreciate myself. Little things at first, like thanking myself for making a good lunch, studying hard for a test, or waking up a bit earlier than normal to go for a quick walk before work.

It started very small, but I must say that a little TLC goes a long, long way.

Years later and I’m happy to report that I enjoy time on my own, sitting with my thoughts, fears, and dreams.

So, I was extremely thrilled yesterday when I realized that I had a huge slice of potential silence bottled up in my day that I’d never taken advantage of.

My drive to and from work.

Yesterday I enjoyed a drive 100% free of music, commercials, news, and weather. It was just me, the sound of my car and the sun beating down on my face.

This is a huge deal for a girl that lives, eats, and sleeps music – I break out in song [and sometimes dance] at least 4-5 times a day.

Weird? Maybe.

… but I digress.

I caught myself reaching for the radio a couple of times, but out of pure curiosity, I fought the urge to blast the tunes.

I’m not sure what came over me, maybe it was the exhaustion brought on by my long morning workout, my calm brain from Monday’s day off, or the incredible dream I had about my Dad the night before.

Whatever the reason, I’m so happy I’ve discovered the amazing[ness] that is driving in silence.

I had time to just think about things, take a moment for myself, set my intention for the day on the drive in, and reflect on the days happenings on the way home.

I’ve found a little chunk of calm in my day without having to dedicate extra time from my hectic schedule + I swear it made my day so much smoother.

I’m holding on to this one!

On with the eats

I was originally planning on using sprouted spelt berries with this recipe, but they got moldy.

Ugh… it’s been so long since I’ve sprouted. That, and I completely forgot about them for 4 days. Oopsies!

Instead of jumping head first into gluten, I’ve decided to introduce each new grain one week at a time so I can notice possible changes in my mood, digestion, and energy.

So far so good. Although oats are not considered a glutenous grain, adding them back to my diet after not having had them for over 3 years is a huge step. No stomach pains or digestive issues to report.

Thank goodness because I’m loving oats.

Another thing I’m loving right now?

The combination of quinoa + buckwheat.

This recipe can be made as a straight up salad, or created into a layered masterpiece!

Light Quinoa and Avocado Tabbouleh Verrines

Vegan, Gluten free, Dairy free, Sugar free, Yeast free, Grain free

This light salad is perfect for a picnic with the family or pack along weekday lunch. It’s loaded with veggies, giving it a cool and crisp taste, perfect for the spring!

Adapted from: Oh She Glows

Ingredients

Salad

  • 1/2 cup raw buckwheat groats
  • 1/2 cup raw red quinoa*
  • 3 cups vegetable broth (or 3 cups water and 1 vegetable bouillon cube)
  • 2 cups curly parsley, chopped finely
  • 2 cups cooked chickpeas
  • 3 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 English cucumber, chopped
  • 2 red peppers, chopped
  • 6 green onion, chopped
  • 1/4 red onion, chopped

Avocado layer

  • 3 avocados
  • 2 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Himalayan rock salt + pepper, to taste

Dressing

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon Himalayan rock salt
  • black pepper, to taste

*note: white would work too, I just love the color the red quinoa brought to the dish

Directions

  1. Prepare the quinoa + buckwheat: place in a pot with 3 cups vegetable broth. Cover, bring to a boil, reduce heat, and let simmer for 25-30 minutes, until tender. Remove from heat and remove lid. Allow to cool.
  2. Meanwhile, finely chop all the vegetables but avocado and place into a large bowl with chickpeas. Set aside.
  3. Mash avocado in a small bowl with 2 tablespoon of lemon juice. Set aside.
  4. In a small bowl, combine all dressing ingredients and stir until combined.
  5. Once cooled, add quinoa and buckwheat to vegetable bowl. Pour on the dressing and stir well.
  6. To make verrines: layer a bowl or parfait cup with avocado + salad until desired serving is made.

Optional: instead of making avocado layer, you can opt to cube your avocado and add to the salad instead!

Makes 6-7 cups.

Did you know that quinoa and buckwheat are not considered grains?

They’re actually seeds!

Cool, I know.

Did you also know that you can eat buckwheat groats raw? Yessery you can!

Sprinkle over top of a salad, add to your granola, top your smoothies. Or as we did on Monday, use it as an ice cream topper.

The opportunities are endless.

And one last fact: do you know what a verrine is?

I didn’t either until Angela explained it a couple of days ago:

“A Verrine is ‘a confection, originally from France, made by layering ingredients in a small glass. It can be either sweet or savoury, making a dessert or snack.’

There is a name for layering ingredients in a small bowl? PERFECT!

I feel like this just gives me more excuses to layer… everything!

Did you go through the awkward phase of not knowing how to feel comfortable with yourself? How did you learn to love the adult you’d become?

Have you tried driving in silence?

Do you take time to appreciate yourself?

Do you combine grains? If so, what’s your favorite combo?

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