Sunday, January 6, 2013

Spanish-Style Chickpea Queso Bowl - Vegan Sunday Brunch, Episode 27

Hai!

Starting this moment, I will officially be blogging from Austin, Texas for the next six months.  And since I just arrived on Friday, my pantry supply is minuscule - some chickpeas, red lentils, brown rice and quinoa is pretty much the extent of it.  Oh, and this stuff:


What you're looking at is some Farmer's Market goodies, as well as veggie bouillon, and hiding in the back is this bottle of lavender balsamic vinegar - it's as amazing as it sounds.  No, more amazing.  I could eat the stuff with a spoon.  Oh, and vegan queso - cool, eh?  The guy who sold me this also has vegan kimchi and other awesome condiments, so I'll definitely be back next Saturday.

Not pictured is the vegan donut I snatched up.  But don't worry, I'll be back to picture it next week.  And every week after.  Because, vegan donuts.

And so, my brunch.  Basically it's more like a supper, but I ate it around brunch time so it totally counts.  I had cooked some chickpeas earlier in the day, and I knew I could make a meal out of 'em with brown rice, veggies and a sauce.


I present to you "Spanish-Style Chickpea Queso Bowl".  Well the chickpeas are Spanish-style - the queso adds a fusion element that I promise works quite well.  I don't have a recipe today (I'm developing it for my bowl book!), but I can at least share the method.

Heat some olive oil and saute a small onion and a couple cloves of garlic.  Shred about a cup of green cabbage and continue to saute until everything softens.  Then add paprika (about a teaspoon) and salt to taste.  Stir it around and add about 2 cups of chickpeas.  Keep it on the stove until everything is hot, remove it from the heat, and add a splash of awesome balsamic vinegar.  Voila!  I could just eat this mixture straight-up, it's so good.

I served the chickpea mixture atop brown rice, with shredded carrot, sliced olives, cilantro and tomato, and poured on a generous helping of vegan queso.  Depending on how spicy the queso is, go ahead and add some hot sauce.

Despite not being very brunch-y, it made a fantastic meal, and I can't wait to track down foodstuffs like tofu and fruit and flour and baking powder and... well, one thing at a time.

Michael and I had a brief Skype date over brunch, and plan on spending future Sunday mornings together in a more leisurely fashion (he had to run off to work today).  Seriously, thank God for Skype.  Being apart is hard enough, I couldn't imagine not getting to see each other's faces!


And this, my friends, is my new happy hippie yard, complete with greenery and lawn decorations galore.  Yesterday I got to spend a lucky hour sitting outside in a warm sunbeam - a far cry from back home, covered in snow as it is.  Today I plan on enjoying the weather some more (sunny and 15 C!) and exploring my neighbourhood, which has this total cabin vibe, what with all the trees and quaint houses.

So take care, guys - hope you had a good weekend, and for the teachers I know (like Michael, Jolene and my former self), good luck at school tomorrow!

20 comments:

  1. Yay, congrats on making the move!! Your brunch sounds freaking delicious! The queso is a nice touch too. Sounds nice a hearty, a perfect brunch meal! It's also nice that you were able to enjoy it over skype with Mike :) I know it must be hard for you.

    Great farmer's market haul!! Sounds like they have a lot of great stuff there. I love seeing what fellow bloggers get at their local farmer's markets because they differ so much :) Can't wait to see those donuts!

    What an adorable yard! It looks like a really great area! Enjoy your time exploring it!

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    1. Thanks for all of your enthusiasm, Sarah - I really appreciate it! It is difficult to be apart, but I'm trying really hard not to focus on it. We'll see how that goes.

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  2. Vegan kimchi!!!!!??? I hope to see you make something with that!! And that vegan cheese sauce on the bowl looks AMAZING!

    Glad to hear you made it safe and sound (even with some airport kerfuffle) :-)

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    1. Vegan kimchi, for realz. Awesome, eh? :)

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  3. Hey there Austin! *waves* So, you've got sun, vegan donuts, kimchi and crazy-go-nuts vinegar - sounds like you're doing pretty well for your first week. And dude, ready made queso = total score! Just finished up my homemade batch with some chilli cheese dogs. More deets demanded on the bowl book too!

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    1. Hi far away Joey! And yeah, good vibes from the week so far! Ready made queso is great, but I just know that homemade could be even better - I could totally go for some chili cheese dogs right now.

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  4. Well, first off, that yard is awesome! I love the balconies. my friend who now lives in Austin recently visited and he was telling me about the bamboo in his yard - I had no idea there was so much lush greenery in TX. ANYWAY I'm so glad you made it and seem to be settling in.
    Sounds like the pantry is on the way up. The bowl looks fantastic. How spicy was that queso?

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    1. It's amazing to see greenery in January! It's going to be a while before the novelty of that wears off. And the queso was very mild, I definitely amped it up with Sriracha. :)

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  5. What a refreshing change of pace on the standard rice bowl! I almost always go with Asian-inspired flavors, so I like the sound of your spicy Spanish version. Perfect for a cold winter day, too.

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    1. Although "cold" is relative, Austin feels like a tropical paradise compared to back home, ha ha. :)

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  6. Yum, the queso looks delicious. And best of luck in Austin. I was there in August and loved it. I have a friend that's always posting about doing outdoor stuff this time of year and I've been pretty envious of the warmer weather. Awesome yard. I'm sure you've already been to Daily Juice and Sweet Ritual? That was my favorite place in town. Oh, and Cheer Up Charlie's is a bar that has house-made kombucha on tap. You probably already know all of this. And yes, thank goodness for Skype. It's not easy being away from the love. Take care :)

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    1. Thanks for all this! I've heard of all these places, except for Sweet Ritual, and want to check them all out - especially Cheer Up Charlie's!

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  7. Congratulations on the move! I can't wait to see more of Austin. Love that (delicious) city :)

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  8. Your sunny yard looks great! I'm so glad you made the plunge to Austin. Starting your blogging there with a queso-topped bowl is even better! Can't wait for more posts.

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  9. Sweet backyard you’ve got there, I’m uber jealous over the greenery, I could definitely go for some +15 weather right about now. Do you start school right away or do you have some time to settle in first?
    We used Facetime over Xmas, and it’s totally awesome! I love that we can actually see and talk to people I haven’t seen in years. Way to go technology for making long distance relationships easier :)
    You’re writing a bowl book? I want first dibs on testing!

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    1. I already started, only had a couple days to settle in! Oh well, I can settle while I school, ha ha. :) I'll keep the bowl thing in mind for sure! :)

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  10. Excited to follow your experiences in Austin, are you studying at the Natural Epicurean? I'm highly considering going in the Fall...

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    1. Yeah, totally! I'll be updating the blog about once a week so you can see how it goes. :)

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