Green Chili Rice with Black Beans!
I haven’t tried a new recipe in a while. While we were away I mostly trotted out tried and true dishes to minimize time spent in the kitchen. So it was nice to try something new tonight. David and I saw Plant Pure Nation last night (more on that in my next post), and I had that on the brain when I went searching for a new recipe on the Forks Over Knives website. For those of you who don’t know, these movies (made by the same team) focus on the health benefits of a whole foods, plant-based diet. This health-promoting way of eating includes fruits and vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts and seeds. It does not include any processed food, meat, dairy, eggs, sugar, salt or oil.
I am now a vegan lifestyle coach and educator, and I assume that many of my future clients will be interested in going vegan in order to prevent or reverse diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and cancer. I typically use olive oil in my cooking, particularly when I’m sautéing vegetables, and I think it’s important that I’m comfortable cooking either with or without oil. Plus, I think it’s better for my own health to limit how much oil I consume. The Forks Over Knives website is full of oil-free recipes and you can link to this one here.
This dish may be missing the oil but not the flavor. The first step is creating a poblano pepper, mild green chili, spinach and cilantro puree (plenty of flavor right there!). The puree is added to vegetable broth and the rice is cooked in that. While the rice is cooking, you sauté an onion. In order to sauté without oil, you stir the diced onion over medium heat and add water (one tablespoon at a time) if the onion starts to stick. Once the onion is translucent you add jalapeño pepper, black beans and cumin. I added some salt at this point because that’s my preference, but you can easily skip it. Once the rice is cooked you mix all the ingredients together, sprinkle with lime zest and serve it up.
Our dish came out much creamier than the original recipe. I’m sure that’s a technique thing (me and rice!) but in the end, David and I both enjoyed the consistency which was rather risotto-like. The poblanos and jalapeño added just the right amount of heat, and neither of us missed the oil. So I learned something new today, and I will definitely consider using this oil-free approach in other dishes.
So guys, what do you think about oil? Yea or nay?