Mushroom and Arugula Quinoa Bowls

Mushroom and Arugula Quinoa Bowls

Even though I’m not a vegetarian, that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy a meatless meal on regular occasion. In fact, I think it’s very important to eat legumes and plant-based proteins for a good overall balance of one’s diet.  My thoughts on the matter also play nicely with the new Canada Food Guide, so I see it as a win-win. But eating a meatless meal doesn’t have to be complicated, and that’s why I love these Mushroom and Arugula Quinoa Bowls.

Why do I love quinoa?

It’s neutral in taste and can take on a wide variety of flavours.

Quick and easy to prepare with no special equipment or longer soaking periods required.

Great as a main dish or side dish and is gluten-free.

It contains plant-based protein and essential amino acids, making it a complete protein. This is important because essential amino acids are the ones that the body cannot produce on its own and must get from food. 

Not only a source of protein but fibre, magnesium, manganese and folate to name only a few. 

It has a pleasant texture and holds up well on its own or in combination with other foods.

If you love quinoa too or simply want to find out for yourself what all the fuss is about, here are a couple of other great recipes that include this amazing food. 

Quinoa Spinach Egg Cups

Spinach and Quinoa Stuffed Portabella Mushrooms

Mushroom and Arugula Quinoa Bowls sit on a wooden board surrounded by fresh thyme, lemon half, mushrooms and linen napkin.
Mushroom and Arugula Quinoa Bowls
Print Recipe
    Servings Prep Time
    2 people 20 minutes
    Cook Time
    12 minutes
    Servings Prep Time
    2 people 20 minutes
    Cook Time
    12 minutes
    Mushroom and Arugula Quinoa Bowls sit on a wooden board surrounded by fresh thyme, lemon half, mushrooms and linen napkin.
    Mushroom and Arugula Quinoa Bowls
    Print Recipe
      Servings Prep Time
      2 people 20 minutes
      Cook Time
      12 minutes
      Servings Prep Time
      2 people 20 minutes
      Cook Time
      12 minutes
      Ingredients
      Servings: people
      Instructions
      1. Heat broth to a simmer in a small pot. Stir in quinoa, reduce heat to a steady simmer, cover and cook for about 18 minutes (I find cooking quinoa in broth takes a few minutes longer than just water). Remove from heat and allow to rest for 5 minutes.
      2. In a small bowl whisk together 1 tbsp olive oil, lemon juice, mustard, half of the thyme, salt and pepper. Set aside.
      3. In a medium skillet, heat 1 tbsp of olive oil. Once hot, add mushrooms and cook on medium highfor 3-4 minutes until starting to turn golden. Stir and continue to cook for about 2 minutes. Add garlic, shallots and half of the thyme. Cook, stirring often until garlic and shallots have softened, another 2-3 minutes.
      4. Fluff quinoa with a fork and add to mushrooms, stirring to combine. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
      5. Add arugula and sauté for 1-2 minutes until starting to soften and wilt. Remove from heat and stir in dressing. Divide into 2 bowls and top with grated parmesan cheese and toasted nuts.
      Recipe Notes

      I used pine nuts here, but cashews are also wonderful.  To quickly toast nuts, heat 1 tsp of olive oil in a small pan over medium heat. Add nuts and toss or stir occasionally until golden.

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      Affiliate Disclosure

      I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
      Roasted Gremolata Cauliflower

      Roasted Gremolata Cauliflower

      Cauliflower is boring!

      But it doesn’t have to be with a good roasting and the addition of a vibrant Gremolata.  Roasted Gremolata Cauliflower is anything but boring with its caramelized edges, fresh garlic, parsley and a good dose of lemon zest.  The Gremolata is a game changer for plain, boring cauliflower, transforming it into a flavourful and zesty side dish.

      What is Gremolata?

      Gremolata is an Italian condiment/accompaniment that is made with Italian flat leaf parsley, lemon zest, fresh garlic, olive oil and salt. It’s vibrant and fresh with a slight bitter note from the parsley and flavour punch from the garlic. If you have parsley, lemon and garlic, you’ve got a simple sauce that will spruce up so many things. It’s a classic accompaniment for the Italian dish Ossobuco but also great with fish, lamb and of course vegetables. 

      Roasted Gremolata Cauliflower
      Print Recipe
        Servings Prep Time
        5-6 people 20 minutes
        Cook Time
        30 minutes
        Servings Prep Time
        5-6 people 20 minutes
        Cook Time
        30 minutes
        Roasted Gremolata Cauliflower
        Print Recipe
          Servings Prep Time
          5-6 people 20 minutes
          Cook Time
          30 minutes
          Servings Prep Time
          5-6 people 20 minutes
          Cook Time
          30 minutes
          Ingredients
          Servings: people
          Instructions
          1. Preheat oven to 400℉
          2. In a large bowl stir together parsley, lemon zest, garlic, salt and 3 tbsp of olive oil. Set aside.
          3. Remove outer leaves from cauliflower and cut the head into quarters. Easily core the cauliflower by cutting it out of each quarter, allowing any remaining leaves and stem to come away with it.
          4. Break or cut the cauliflower into large bite-size pieces. Toss cauliflower with remaining 1 tbsp of olive oil and a few grinds of a pepper mill. Spread out evenly on a large baking tray.
          5. Roast in the oven for about 30 minutes, turning once, allowing the bottom edges to become golden and caramelized.
          6. Remove from oven and add to the bowl of Gremolata along with the parmesan cheese. Toss to coat evenly and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.
          Recipe Notes

          -make as a vegan option by omitting the parmesan cheese or using your favourite alternative cheese.

          Affiliate Disclosure

          I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
          Flaky Jalapeño Cheddar Biscuits

          Flaky Jalapeño Cheddar Biscuits

          Make a better biscuit…

          It’s hard to resist a flaky, buttery biscuit and these Flaky Jalapeño Cheddar Biscuits are tender and flaky.  So good on their own, dunked or piled high with your favourite fillings. The good thing is, they’re easy to make using basic ingredients.  So what makes a good biscuit?  Let’s look at the basics.

          -use quality butter.

          -use fresh baking powder and baking soda, they do EXPIRE!

          -cut butter into flour evenly to ensure a flaky biscuit.

          -do not overwork the dough, once mixed, only knead enough to bring the dough together.  Overworking dough will result in a tougher biscuit.

          -use a sharp cutting tool for the best edges.

          -brush tops and sides with a whisked mixture of egg and cream for a nice golden exterior.

           

          What’s a biscuit good for?

          By far my favourite thing to do with a flaky biscuit is dunk it into soup, stew or chili.  But, they’re also wonderful as a sandwich.  Especially these Flaky Jalapeño Cheddar Biscuits, because they spread out a little, making them just the right size for a fried egg…just saying!

          Flaky Jalapeno Cheddar Biscuits
          Print Recipe
            Servings Prep Time
            8-10 4" biscuits 25 minutes
            Cook Time
            18 minutes
            Servings Prep Time
            8-10 4" biscuits 25 minutes
            Cook Time
            18 minutes
            Flaky Jalapeno Cheddar Biscuits
            Print Recipe
              Servings Prep Time
              8-10 4" biscuits 25 minutes
              Cook Time
              18 minutes
              Servings Prep Time
              8-10 4" biscuits 25 minutes
              Cook Time
              18 minutes
              Ingredients
              Servings: 4" biscuits
              Instructions
              1. Preheat oven to 425℉ and line a large baking tray with parchment.
              2. In a large bowl whisk together flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
              3. Add cubed butter and using a pastry cutter, cut butter into dry ingredients until pea-sized and evenly distributed.
              4. Whisk together buttermilk and one large egg. Add to dry ingredients and stir until just starting to come together. Add grated cheese and diced jalapeno and continue to mix until incorporated being careful not to overmix. It will be a bit of a scraggly mess.
              5. Flour your work surface and dump out the dough. Knead dough a few times to bring everything together. Flatten dough into a 3/4"-1" disk. Using a 3" round cutter, cut out biscuits.
              6. Reform remaining dough and cut out biscuits. Place biscuits on a parchment lined baking tray.
              7. Whisk together one large egg and one tbsp of milk or cream. Brush each biscuit top and sides generoulsly. Bake in preheated oven for about 18 minutes until golden and puffed.
              8. Remove from oven and allow to rest on the tray for 3-5 minutes before moving to a cooling rack. Serve slightly warm.
              Recipe Notes

              -these particular biscuits spread out some and are wonderful sliced as a sandwich.

              -I used a 3" cutter, however for slightly smaller biscuits that would be good for soups or stews a 2 1/2" cutter is probably preferred.

              Affiliate Disclosure

              I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
              Almond Milk Chai Latte

              Almond Milk Chai Latte

              Does your heart or head rule winter?

              For those of you being in the upper northern hemisphere like myself know all too well about bitter cold winds, endless shovelling and icy roads.  This same blistery cold also brings beautiful hoar frost, sparkling snow, ice skating and snowmen.  I guess it’s all about perspective!

              Let your heart rule!

              Warm and comforting, Almond Milk Chai Latte appeals to the heart with its frothy top, myriad of warming spices and fragrant aroma.  It’s a simple way to forget the shortness of the days, snow removal and frostbite.

              It’s easier than you think…

              Chai is black tea infused with spices like cardamom, cinnamon, pepper, clove and ginger.  Some include star anise or fennel seeds, nutmeg and allspice. Each having their own unique flare.  I like mine with a little less clove but with a hint of sweetness.  The wonderful thing about making your own chai concentrate is you can make just how you like it. 

              Making your own chai mix is quick and easy.  It’s a matter of simply simmering desired spices and steeping them with black tea.  The concentrate can be made ahead and stored in the fridge for up to a week.  The concentrate merely needs to be warmed and mixed with your favourite milk or milk alternative for a warming cup anytime the mood strikes. Getting that perfect frothy top is easy too with the help an Amazon Milk Frother Enjoy! 

              Be sure to try the warming and boozy Blueberry Tea if you’re looking for something a little stronger to warm you up.

              Almond Milk Chai Latte
              Print Recipe
                Servings Prep Time
                4 8 oz servings 15 minutes
                Cook Time
                20 minutes
                Servings Prep Time
                4 8 oz servings 15 minutes
                Cook Time
                20 minutes
                Almond Milk Chai Latte
                Print Recipe
                  Servings Prep Time
                  4 8 oz servings 15 minutes
                  Cook Time
                  20 minutes
                  Servings Prep Time
                  4 8 oz servings 15 minutes
                  Cook Time
                  20 minutes
                  Ingredients
                  Servings: 8 oz servings
                  Instructions
                  1. Crush cardamom using the bottom of a small pot or metal measuring cup. Remove seeds and discard shells. Continue to crush cardamom seeds along with peppercorns, cloves, star anise, cinnamon stick and nutmeg until well broken down. It will take 10-12 good crushes to break down the whole spices. Bring 2 cups of water to a simmer in a small pot (preferably with a pouring spout) Add crushed spices along with ground ginger. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
                  2. Remove from heat and stir in loose black tea. Cover and steep for 10 minutes. Stir in brown sugar and strain through a fine-mesh sieve. Will yield approximately 2 cups of chai mix.
                  3. Warm and froth almond milk. Pour 1/2 cup hot chai concentrate into a mug and top with 1/2 cup of almond milk and a spoonful or two of froth. Sprinkle with ground cinnamon if desired and serve immediately.
                  Recipe Notes

                  -2% milk can be used if desired.

                  -you can grind the whole spices using an electric spice grinder as well, however, crushing by hand works just fine.

                  -almond milk or milk can be frothed using an emersion blender, by shaking, commercial frother, espresso machine frother or a mini hand-held electric whisk. You can find these items in My Amazon Store under "The Extras"

                  -the chai concentrate will keep in a sealed container for up to a week in the fridge.

                  Affiliate Disclosure

                  I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
                  Creamy Caper Smashed Potatoes

                  Creamy Caper Smashed Potatoes

                  Creamy Caper Smashed Potatoes…oh my!

                  One of my quick and easy weeknight meals consists of broiled fish with a creamy caper paste.  It takes mere minutes to cook and is tender, moist and full of flavour.  I decided to use this same paste on smashed baby potatoes for an easy side dish that’s super delicious and pairs well with roasted meats and fish. 

                  Capers are the unripened flowers buds of Capparis spinosa or Capparis inermis and are generally dried and pickled.  Here’s a handy link from The Spruce Eats that tells you a little more about the amazing caper. 

                  You won’t be disappointed!

                  Roasted mini potatoes get a gentle smash and topped with a creamy caper paste made with capers, lemon, dill, mayonnaise, and parmesan cheese.  Crispy little potato disks with fluffy centres are the perfect base for the briny capers, fresh dill and creamy mayo.  

                  If you’re not familiar with capers, they’re a handy pantry item to have kicking around.  They’re pungent and briny and not all that good on their own, but combine them with cream, butter or lemon and you have a flavour explosion. They add a salty depth of flavour that enhances sauces, dressing, salads, and more. Enjoy!

                  Author: Compelled to Cook

                  Creamy Caper Smashed Potatoes
                  Print Recipe
                    Servings Prep Time
                    3-4 people 15 minutes
                    Cook Time
                    30-35 minutes
                    Servings Prep Time
                    3-4 people 15 minutes
                    Cook Time
                    30-35 minutes
                    Creamy Caper Smashed Potatoes
                    Print Recipe
                      Servings Prep Time
                      3-4 people 15 minutes
                      Cook Time
                      30-35 minutes
                      Servings Prep Time
                      3-4 people 15 minutes
                      Cook Time
                      30-35 minutes
                      Ingredients
                      Servings: people
                      Instructions
                      1. Preheat oven to 350℉. In a medium bowl toss together potatoes, olive oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper.
                      2. Spread out evenly on a baking tray and bake for 25-30 minutes, turning once, until just tender.
                      3. While potatoes are baking, combine together mayonnaise, parmesan, capers, dill, lemon juice and pepper.
                      4. Remove potatoes from oven and gently flatten each with a flat surfaced utensil (I use a metal potato masher) to a third of its original height.
                      5. Set oven rack to 7" from broiler and turn oven to broil. Spread 1 tbsp of paste onto each potato. Broil for 2-3 minutes until golden and bubbly. Remove from oven and serve immediately, garnishing with fresh dill if desired.

                      Affiliate Disclosure

                      I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
                      Rosemary Buttermilk Rolls

                      Rosemary Buttermilk Rolls

                      Rosemary Buttermilk Rolls bake up perfectly soft and speckled with fresh rosemary.  This makes them absolutely perfect along side your baked ham or golden roasted turkey.  There’s almost nothing better than freshly baked bread, filling the kitchen with an amazing aroma.  The kind that sparks a memory and elicits a feeling of comfort. 

                      These lovely rolls are easier than you think, requiring no fancy equipment and use everyday ingredients. When making bread, it’s important to distribute the yeast evenly, whether you’re using fresh yeast or dry yeast.  Because I’m using dry yeast, I bloom it with the liquids and sugar prior to mixing. This not only ensures the yeast will be evenly dissolved and distributed but also gives it a head start in the production of carbon dioxide which helps make the bread rise. 

                      You won’t be disappointed, and neither will your guests.  Rosemary Buttermilk Rolls are delicious and simple and will make your holiday table the best it can be.  Enjoy!

                      Rosemary Buttermilk Rolls
                      Print Recipe
                        Servings Prep Time
                        12 rolls 30 minutes
                        Cook Time Passive Time
                        18-20 minutes 105 minutes
                        Servings Prep Time
                        12 rolls 30 minutes
                        Cook Time Passive Time
                        18-20 minutes 105 minutes
                        Rosemary Buttermilk Rolls
                        Print Recipe
                          Servings Prep Time
                          12 rolls 30 minutes
                          Cook Time Passive Time
                          18-20 minutes 105 minutes
                          Servings Prep Time
                          12 rolls 30 minutes
                          Cook Time Passive Time
                          18-20 minutes 105 minutes
                          Ingredients
                          Servings: rolls
                          Instructions
                          1. Whisk together buttermilk and 1/4 cup water. Warm to 95℉-110℉ in the microwave using 30 second intervals.
                          2. Combine warmed liquids, sugar and yeast in a stand mixer bowl fitted with a dough hook (see note). Allow yeast to bloom for 10 minutes
                          3. Stir in 1 1/2 cups of flour, rosemary and salt. Start kneading and add the butter chunks a few at a time, along with additional flour until the butter has been incorporated and the dough is starting to pull away from the sides. Continue to add flour by the tablespoon until the dough is smooth and no longer sticks to the side of the bowl, about 8 minutes.
                          4. Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap or kitchen towel. Allow dough to rise in a warm, draft-free area until doubled in size, approximately 60 minutes.
                          5. Preheat oven to 400℉. Remove dough from bowl to a clean work surface. Knead two or three times by hand to remove the air. Divide dough into 12 equal portions of 55-58 grams each. Roll into balls and place on a parchment lined baking tray 1/4" apart. Cover with oiled plastic wrap or kitchen towel and allow to rise for 45 minutes.
                          6. Whisk egg and 1 tbsp of water with a fork and brush evenly onto rolls. Bake in preheated oven for 18-20, rotating tray half way through baking time. Remove from oven and slide onto a cooling rack, removing the parchment paper. Allow rolls to cool to slightly warm or room temperature for serving.
                          Recipe Notes

                          -If kneading by hand, bloom yeast as instructed and stir in the first portion of flour, rosemary and salt.  Turn the wet dough onto a work surface and add a few chunks of butter and 1/4 cup additional flour.  Knead by hand, adding remaining butter and flour by the tablespoon until dough is smooth and no longer sticks excessively to the work surface. Proceed as the recipe indicates.

                          -Spacing buns 1/4" apart will result in tray style rolls that you have to pull apart.  For more individual rolls,  increase spacing to 1 1/2" between rolls.

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                          Affiliate Disclosure

                          I may receive compensation for purchases made through this site, at no cost to the purchaser. Compelled to Cook is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com