Grilled Veggies for Cinco de Mayo

While I was in California and Nevada, visiting offspring, we ate at a Mexican restaurant on our way from San Luis Obispo, CA to Reno, NV. The dish was grilled veggies with rice and refried pinto beans. I liked the idea of the recipe more than the food itself because there were too many onions, the beans were pureed, and I think the rice may have been fried. When I was in Reno I remade the dish at my son’s and daughter-in-law’s and liked this version better: healthier & tastier. I hope you do, too. Thanx to son Ira and his wife, Samantha, for taking the photos.

Grilled Veggies with Rice & Beans

Utensils: Measuring cup, cutting board & knife, cooking pan, pot for rice, pot for beans, large serving plate.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 30 minutes
Categories: GF, Sugar Free, Vegan (unless you add grated cheese to the dish as an option)

Ingredients

4-5 cups of any of these (organic) veggies: sliced onions (crescent shaped), yellow summer squash (1), green zucchini (1), sliced mushrooms (6-7),  & sliced red bell pepper (1) one-two garlic cloves or one shallot, peeled & sliced
one ripe avocado, peeled & sliced (optional) and/or whole olives (optional)
olive oil or macadamia oil (2-3 Tbl.)
salt, pepper & cayenne pepper to taste
1- 2 cups cooked white or brown rice with water or soup stock (See #1 below for options)
one cup or one can organic black beans (no BPA in can lining; try Eden foods brand)
Romaine (organic) lettuce, washed and and cut into thin strips, crosswise.

Directions

1. Cook rice according to package directions (2 times the water or stock as the grain) and allow to cook while you make veggies. (I use twice as much liquid as the traditional recipe calls for and cook the rice like pasta, draining off the water when rice is soft, 15-25 minutes, depending on type of rice and your taste preference.)

2. While rice is cooking, preheat oven to 375 or 400 degrees. Spread one-two Tbl. oil onto cookie sheet or baking pan. Cut and slice veggies into bite-sized pieces. (I make onions into crescents, slice squash & zucchini crosswise, slice the mushrooms crosswise, and make the bell pepper into lengthwise slivers after removing stems, seeds, and white membranes.)

These are the veggies before putting  in the oven, They do shrink, so 4-5 cups may yield only 3 cups when cooked; thus, don’t be afraid to use lots of good-for-you veggies.

3. Place cut veggies on oiled cookie sheet. Toss with oil (1-2 Tbl.)  and add salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste. Bake in hot oven (375 to 400 degrees) for about 20 minutes, turning once. Then place oven on broil setting and broil for about 2 minutes veggies will get crisper around the edges. (For even crispier veggies, broil longer but watch carefully so veggies don’t burn. Or for no crispness, omit this step.)

4. In the meantime, while rice is cooking and veggies are baking, heat up black beans in a small sauce pan with enough liquid to avoid burning. (I generally soak black beans overnight and cook the next day, but when I was in Reno and did not have access to soaking beans in our hotel, I used my daughter-in-law’s organic black beans in a can.) Also, wash, dry and slice the Romaine lettuce into strips.

5. When the veggies are done, line the platter with the lettuce. Place cooked veggies in middle and rice and drained beans along the sides, with sliced avocado and/or olives in between rice & beans. Alternately, you can serve the rice and beans in separate bowls. Serve hot.

Variations: Using tortillas, place a little of each of the food items in the center of the corn tortilla, fold two sides in and then roll tightly.  Add grated jack cheese or other of your choice on top of the veggies. If you want the cheese to melt, add the cheese when the veggies are first taken from the oven and are still very hot. If you don’t want a wrap, you can also garnish the dish with baked corn chips for a crunchier taste or use a hard shell tortilla and fill it with veggies, rice & beans. Any way you make this, it’s still a celebration of The Good Taste of Health (my motto) for Cinco de Mayo.

One Response to “Grilled Veggies for Cinco de Mayo”

  1. Mary-Lou Meyers Says:

    Glad to hear you’re back with many ideas for delectable meals. Apparently a change in scenery
    and new dishes create imaginative dishes. I’m glad you improved upon the restaurant probably
    because everything was fresh and organic when possible.

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