I am one of those people who endures winter, waiting (impatiently) for the day the sun breaks through the dark, gloomy clouds and the garden begins to spring to life. Living by the ocean, we love spending time at the beach but getting our bodies sun kissed and sandy is no fun in the cold weather!
So, you can imagine my delight on the weekend when the very-end-of-winter sun shone through and warmed our souls. Sunshine is inspiring. It encourages us to get outside and make the most of it, to exercise and to shed our old winter comforts and look towards the fresh and new.
Spring inspires me to spring clean!
I love to spring clean my kitchen. I go through my pantry and sort out my herb and spice baskets (why is there always one from about 2010?). I take everything out of my fridge and give it a good scrub…someone’s apple juice that has spilled down the side and set in a sticky stream, the jar of fermented cabbage you accidentally forgot to eat, the fish sauce that has been with you since your last move…it all has to go! Then you get the big reward of going shopping for beautiful, healthy, fresh new ingredients and being able to admire the organised mecca of whole food you have created every time you open the fridge or pantry door.
However, in this day and age we are conscious of waste and if anything can be saved, it should be used…that’s where my quinoa vegetable slice comes in!
I named this simple, family friendly lunch Quinoa Surprise because the first time I made it, I was so surprised that my kids ate it! Actually, they loved it and it has become a firm favourite for lunches and snacks and sometimes dinners.
Quinoa Vegetable Slice Recipe
Makes 9 pieces
2 carrots, grated
Small piece of pumpkin, grated
Kernels from 1 cob of corn
A handful of chopped parsley
1 cup of pre-cooked quinoa
4 free range or organic eggs, lightly whisked
Sea salt and pepper to season
A handful of parmesan or cheddar, grated (optional)
What to do:
Put all the ingredients (except the cheese) in a bowl and mix well to combine.
Pour into a lined 20cm square baking dish or cake tin and sprinkle over the cheese if using.
Bake at 180C for 30 minutes, until firm and golden.
Allow to cool slightly before slicing. Can be served hot or cold.
- Add some leftover roast chicken, good quality ham or a tin of drained tuna for extra protein and flavour.
- Make it Italian by adding chopped tomatoes and basil or Greek with feta and spinach.
- Put a slice in a whole grain roll with lettuce, tomato and avocado for a great veggie burger.
- Add any other vegetables you like such as peas, potato, zucchini, diced capsicum.
Kristin Cosgrove is a whole food baker, blogger, educator and mum of three. She is a real food devotee and owns a small business, Mamacino Homemade, making whole food treats and snacks for those without the time (or inclination) to do so themselves. To see all of Kristin’s articles and recipes, click here.