Spanish Style - Show #404

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Quinoa and Butternut Squash Paella

Makes 8 to 10 servings 


1 can (28 ounces) whole peeled tomatoes, with liquid

1 ½  cups diced onion

4 cups chopped butternut squash (cut in 1-inch cubes)

1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained and rinsed

1 ½ cups lightly packed, thinly sliced curly kale

1 ¾ cups quinoa, rinsed thoroughly

2 ½ cups vegetable broth, plus more as needed

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 teaspoons brown sugar

2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 teaspoon turmeric

1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (see note)

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 large red pepper, sliced into strips

Lemon wedges, for garnish

2 to 3 scallions, chopped, for garnish

Put the tomatoes and their juice in a medium bowl and lightly mash using a potato masher or large fork. Put the onion and tomatoes in a 12-inch paella pan or large, deep skillet. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Decrease the heat to medium low, cover and cook for 5 minutes. Stir in the butternut squash. Cover and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the chickpeas, kale, and quinoa. Cover and cook for 2 minutes.

Put the broth, garlic, sugar, lemon juice, turmeric, paprika, salt, and cayenne pepper in a medium bowl and stir to incorporate. Pour the broth mixture into the skillet and stir gently to combine. Cover and cook for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. If the paella seems dry at this point, add 2 to 3 tablespoons of vegetable broth. Stir the paella one more time.

Arrange the red pepper slices over the top of the paella in a pleasing pattern. Cover and cook over low heat for 10 to 15 minutes or until all of the liquid is absorbed. Remove from the heat and allow the paella to stand for 10 to 15 minutes to firm up. 

Spoon the paella onto plates or cut into slices. Serve warm with a lemon wedge on the side. Sprinkle some of the chopped scallions (if using) on top of each serving.

Chef’s Note: You may use sweet paprika in this recipe.



Avocado and Tofu Salad

Makes 2 to 4 servings  


5 to 6 cups baby spring greens

6 to 8 ounces firm or extra-firm regular tofu, drained and cubed (sprouted variety is preferable)

1/2 large avocado, peeled and thinly sliced (see tip)

4 tablespoons raw or roasted almonds


4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil (see note)

2 teaspoons maple syrup

1 large clove garlic, minced

Sea salt, to taste

Freshly ground pepper, to taste

Put the lemon juice, olive oil, maple syrup, and garlic in a small bowl and whisk briskly until smooth and emulsified. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. 

Divide the greens among 4 salad plates. For each serving, top with one-quarter of the tofu cubes and avocado slices and 1 tablespoon almonds. Drizzle 1 tablespoon (or more) of the dressing over each salad. Serve immediately.

Jazzy Tip: To keep the avocado from turning brown, slice it right before assembling your salad.

Chef’s Note: For a low-fat, sweet salad dressing, omit the olive oil and add 3 teaspoons of maple syrup.



Baked Apples in Parchment

Makes 2 to 3 servings

2 very large (or 3 medium) baking apples, such as Rome Beauty or Jonagold

5 tablespoons raisins

1 tablespoon chopped walnuts

2 teaspoons raw unsweetened shredded dried coconut

2 tablespoons maple syrup

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line a large loaf pan with unbleached parchment paper, leaving a 6-inch overhang of the paper on each of the lengthwise sides of the pan. Cut a 1/2-inch slice off the stem end of each apple and set aside.

Remove the cores to 1/4 inch of the bottom of the apples by using a paring knife to cut around the stem area, and then cut around the core. Use a teaspoon or serrated grapefruit spoon to dig out the core and seeds. Make the holes about 1 to 1 ¼  inches wide. (Alternatively, use an apple corer for coring the apples.)

To make the filling, put the raisins, walnuts, coconut, and 2 teaspoons maple syrup in a small mixing bowl and stir to combine. Stuff each apple with the raisin filling, dividing it evenly between the apples. Brush the tops of the apples and stuffing with the remaining maple syrup using a pastry brush. Put the stem ends of the apples back on top of the apples. Carefully position the apples in the pan so they will remain upright while baking. Wrap the apples tightly in the parchment paper by pulling the excess paper over the apples and folding it together to firmly seal.

Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until the apples are soft and the filling is bubbly. Let stand 20 minutes before serving. Serve warm, or cover tightly, refrigerate and serve cold.