Wondering what to cook for dinner this Meatless Monday? I’ve got the solution. Tender crisp broccoli, crunchy cashews and nutty brown rice combine in this deliciously healthy vegetarian main dish that takes only a few minutes to prepare.
Every week I buy an organic fruit and vegetable box from Abel and Cole, and they often tuck a recipe or two inside the box as well. This recipe was inspired by their Brocconut Noodles. I simply toned down the spicing, steamed the broccoli instead of stir-frying it and changed the noodles for brown rice.
Nutrient wise, this dish is a superstar. Broccoli contains potassium, magnesium, calcium, beta-carotene and vitamin C. And despite their reputation, provided they have not been roasted in oil and heavily salted, cashews are a very healthy ingredient as well. Lower in fat than most other nuts, the fat they do contain is high in oleic acid, the same healthy fat found in olive oil. Brown rice will keep you full for longer, and contains selenium, manganese, antioxidants and fibre. Faster than take out, if you want a tasty, nutritious and filling vegetarian meal that’s on the table quickly, this is definitely the dish for you.
- ¾ cup brown rice
- ½ cup raw cashews
- 2 cups broccoli, cut in small florets
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated OR ½ teaspoon dried ginger
- 1 tablespoon low salt soy sauce, plus extra to serve
- 1 tablespoon honey
- salt and pepper to taste
- Cook the rice in boiling salted water according to package directions. When the rice is cooked, drain, set aside and keep warm.
- Steam the broccoli over boiling water for about three minutes until tender but still a bit crisp. Drain, set aside and keep warm.
- Meanwhile, heat a frying pan over medium heat until it is quite hot. Tip in the cashews and toast them, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until they are just beginning to take on a bit of colour. This can happen very quickly, so don't look away even for a second. Remove the cashews from the pan and set aside.
- Carefully, add the sesame oil to the now empty frying pan (it may spit a bit) and return it to the heat.
- Add the garlic and fresh ginger and stir fry for one minute. (If using dried ginger, wait until the next step to add it.)
- Pour in the soy sauce and honey (and the dried ginger if using instead of fresh) and allow the mixture to bubble up a bit.
- Stir in the cooked rice and cashews and stir fry for a moment or two.
- Gently add the broccoli and lightly stir through. You want the florets to remain whole if possible.
- Taste and add salt and/or pepper if necessary.
- Divide the mixture between two bowls and serve with extra soy sauce, if desired.
Adapted from Brocconut Noodles by Abel and Cole