Am I a fussy eater? Goodness, I can almost see my entire family here, nodding in affirmation of said doubt… But no, today is not the day when I agree to that. Although, black bean spaghetti has made me wonder about it. Unlike buckwheat or rice noodles, I did not warm up to black bean noodles immediately. First few of my stir-fry attempts with it always seemed to miss something. As a result, its box soon slipped into an overlooked corner of my pantry.
The other day however, after a long overseas call, I realized that I had only about 20 minutes to fix a lunch. As fate would have it, I was out of my usual favorite flat noodles. So, I decided to try black bean noodles once again. For a moment, I froze… but then found two perfectly ripened avocados in my fridge. I thought to go for a noddle salad using those. If black bean and avocados wouldn’t go together, the world would just make a little less sense. This ought to work…
It did. So much so, that by the time it occurred to me to take a snap for this blog post, I was almost halfway through my bowl. Here is what I now fondly call as Guacamole Black Bean Pasta.
GUACAMOLE BLACK BEAN PASTA
2 portions of black bean spaghetti (about 4 cups)
2 ripe avocados
1 small onion, or better, 3-4 sprigs of spring onion
1 medium tomato
Lemon juice and salt to taste
3 tablespoon olive oil
2-3 cloves of garlic
2 green chili peppers
- Cook black bean noodles per instruction. Drain and keep aside.
- In a saucepan, heat olive oil and fry thinly chopped garlic and green chili peppers in it till fragrant. Remove from heat. Pour over cooked noodles and mix.
- In a bowl, mash avocado flesh to pulp. Add chopped tomato and onion. Season with salt and lemon juice.
- Mix this guacamole with tempered noodles.
- That’s it. Serve and Tuck in.
You can also mash raw garlic and chillis with guacamole, if you like. But I just thought that using a tempering to season black bean noodles would add that perk 🙂
Sometimes, only handful of things, the usual fare out of your pantry or refrigerator shelves, are enough to create most memorable of your meals. This dinner of ours on a weekday night was one such. The recipe is really crisp, so I will keep my preface the same to match it. Just two words- Classic delight 🙂
2 servings of noodles (cooked al dente, as per the directions)
About 8-10 mushrooms (I used baby bella)
1 white onion
Handful of spring onion/ Scallion
1 inch of ginger
4-5 cloves of garlic
2-3 green chili peppers
Olive oil to stir fry (about 3-4 tablespoons)
Tamari sauce to taste
Vinegar to taste
- Heat a wok. Swirl it with dashes of olive oil for stir-frying
- On high heat, fry thinly chopped green chili peppers, garlic cloves, and julienned ginger, till fragrant.
- Add half-sliced onion, over it till it turns translucent.
- Add sliced mushrooms and fry till slightly seared. Do not cover the pan.
- Season with tamari and vinegar.
- Mix in the pre-cooked al dente noodles. Stir-fry everything for a moment.
- Sprinkle with thinly chopped scallion/ spring onion leaves and it is ready!
I love to have couscous in my pantry for its quick and simple mode of preparation. There are days, when I don’t have time to cook a pot of rice or even quinoa. Yet, I am not too keen to have any kind of bread either. On such days, couscous is my friend. It steams to its grainy and fluffy self, in just five minutes of soaking in hot water (or stock, to raise the flavor profile). Today, I decided to make this couscous into a veggie-mushroom pilaf, as a quick, light, and tasty workday lunch.
MUSHROOM COUSCOUS PILAF
1.5 cups of couscous
1.5 cups of vegetable stock (or water)
1 cup of green peas
1 medium carrot
1 small onion
1/2 pound of mushrooms (i.e. 5-6 of baby Bella mushrooms for me. And well… I had only 1/2 pound of mushrooms left…If I had more, I would have happily used them all up. More the merrier :))
3-4 cloves of garlic
1-2 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon of cumin powder
Salt and red chili flakes/ pepper to taste
Dried/ Fresh herbs of your choice (I used dried basil)
1-2 Lemon wedge for serving (optional)
- Take couscous in a large serving casserole/ bowl with a lid.
- Heat stock/ water (no need to boil though).
- Pour the hot stock/ water on couscous. Cover with lid and keep aside for five minutes. Fluff with a fork, afterwords.
- Meanwhile, in a skillet heat olive oil.
- Slice mushrooms lengthwise and sauté with thinly chopped onion, garlic, and sprinkles of salt, chili/pepper, herbs. On a medium-high heat, it would not take more than five minutes.
- Transfer to the pot of couscous
- With another dash of olive oil on the skillet, stir fry green peas and grated carrot, on a tempering of turmeric powder and cumin powder. Season with salt.
- Transfer to the couscous pot and mix everything thoroughly with a fork.
- Enjoy, maybe with a squeeze of lemon juice.