Red Quinoa with Swiss Chard, Mushrooms and Purple Cauliflower

No, no. Barney the dinosaur did not in fact explode all over my quinoa. That’s some real life purple cauliflower rawt thar.

Have you ever seen such a thing? Well guess what, CLASS. I did a little research on these beauts, so get out your #2 and some notebook paper and let’s get LEARNT. And if you’re good I’ll let you say a curse word on the playground.

A) Did you know there are actually 4 colors of ze caulis? Yep. White, orange, green and purple. Isn’t this already so exciting?

B) Get this: the purple is caused by the presence of some antioxidant group called anthocyaasldnsndifys. It’s the SAME antioxidants found in red wine! Well, and red cabbage but that’s boring.

C) Word on the street is that you cannot grind and mill and press and blend the purple cauliflower in the hopes of achieving relaxation once consumed in drink form. What? NO I didn’t try it. Like I said, someone told me. Hahahaha! Silly you….*ahem*


D) This is where the stars align, you guys and I didn’t even plan it. Paired with the red quinoa and green swiss chard, it’s almost like the colors of the MARDI GRAS FLAG. Squint your eyes. See it? Squint harder. The flag? See the colors and the flagness of the Mardi Grasness? Give up on life?


Whatever, IT SO IS and I’m embarrassed at how much this excites me.


And guess what else! This dish is deliciously vegan. So it’s like the G-rated version of what Mardi Gras stands for. I guess you could eat it with your shirt off if need be.

Roasted veggies with pops of quinoa and silky strands of chaaaardddddd. Laissez les bons my faaaaaaacccceee.

Class dismissed.

What it took for 2 (or 4 as a side dish):

* 3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
* 8 oz baby bell mushrooms, sliced
* 1 head purple (or regular) cauliflower, broken up into florets
* 1/2 yellow onion, sliced
* 1 cup red (or regular) quinoa
* 2 cloves garlic, minced
* 1 bunch swiss chard, sliced into thin ribbons (ends discarded or composted)
* coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
* fresh basil for garnish

Preheat the oven to 350.

On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the sliced mushrooms with the onions, cauliflower florets, 1 Tbs. oil and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Roast for about 40 minutes, checking at the 30-minute mark.

Bring the remaining 2 Tbs. oil to a medium-high heat in a skillet. Add the garlic and bloom for 30 seconds. Add the swiss chard and saute on medium until wilted, 7 minutes.

In the meantime, boil the quinoa in water until they pop open into little spirals, about 20 minutes. Drain and add the quinoa to the swiss chard. Toss to combine with another pinch of salt and pepper.

Add the roasted veggies to the skillet and give another toss. Drizzle in a little more oil if needed. Taste. More salt? Do it.

Serve garnished with basil leaves. So simple and

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21 Responses to Red Quinoa with Swiss Chard, Mushrooms and Purple Cauliflower

  1. Rebecca February 20, 2012 at 3:41 pm #
    Wow!! I love all of the ingredients in here! Thanks for the facts on purple cauliflower! I have yet to see it in my neighborhood grocery store... but I'm sure I could find it at Whole Foods. Seems like such a healthy dish. YUM!
  2. Cassie February 20, 2012 at 4:36 pm #
    Look at you, you teacher. Love this!!
  3. kelley February 20, 2012 at 4:43 pm #
    That cauliflower is gorgeous. Another healthy and tasty meal, Bev!
  4. Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga February 20, 2012 at 4:43 pm #
    Absolutely gorgeous, Bev! I love eating veggies that are full of unique colors...purple cauli is one of them. About 3 years ago, purple cauli was the header of my blog!
  5. Deanna B. February 20, 2012 at 4:46 pm #
    Well I just got learnt. And I'm feeling it as a Mardi Gras food since I won't have time to make gumbo tomorrow.
  6. Katie February 20, 2012 at 5:27 pm #
    Yessss for roasted vegetables...again! And I love purple food. That cauliflower and purple fingerling potatoes make my heart sing.
  7. Emilie @ Emilie's Enjoyables February 20, 2012 at 6:02 pm #
    I feel so much more educated on cauliflower now. My day is complete.
  8. Margarita February 20, 2012 at 7:06 pm #
    Love all the colors in this dish and all the healthy goodness in it. GOOD STUFF!
  9. Julie @ Table for Two February 20, 2012 at 7:49 pm #
    Wow, thanks Miss Bev for the awesome instructional on this -- it looks deeeelicious!! I love quinoa and I have seen the red ones in stores recently and they look intriguing! Great flavors and I want some purple (my fav color) cauliflower!!
  10. Kathryn February 20, 2012 at 8:20 pm #
    Love the colours, there's something about eating food that's bright that just makes me so darn happy.
  11. kale @ tastes good to me! February 20, 2012 at 9:21 pm #
    I'm lovin the honkin glass of red wine goin on in the background! Yee-haw!!
  12. Natalie @ Cooking for My Kids February 21, 2012 at 2:28 am #
    I absolutely love your creative culinary skills. You amaze and impress me with each and every post.
  13. Jill February 21, 2012 at 5:24 am #
    I wonder what its taste like. actually its my first time ever saw this kind of food but its healthy i mean it :)
  14. Krissy's Creations February 21, 2012 at 5:27 am #
    I see it!! Love the purple cauliflower :)
  15. Julia {The Roasted Root} February 21, 2012 at 6:51 am #
    Cauliflower makes me a know...but I love and eat the stuff anyway. I've been seeing red quinoa a lot lately and still have not tried you know if there is a nutritional difference between the red and regular? Way to go on a delicious and healthy meal - I could eat this as leftovers for days!
  16. Katrina @ Warm Vanilla Sugar February 21, 2012 at 1:28 pm #
    Mmm good for the soul food! Love it!
  17. Em (Wine and Butter) February 21, 2012 at 1:55 pm #
    Thats way better than anything I ever got learnt in school. AND WAY prettier toooooo!!
  18. Deborah February 21, 2012 at 2:27 pm #
    I want to find some of that purple cauliflower!!
  19. Cookie and Kate February 21, 2012 at 2:29 pm #
    I want this to be my lunch. I just learned to like cauliflower. Wish someone had presented purple cauliflower to me earlier because purple cauliflower is way more interesting than white!
  20. Karriann February 21, 2012 at 4:05 pm #
    This looks appetizing! I can't wait to try this recipe out :) "Spice it Up"
  21. Alison @ ingredients, Inc. February 26, 2012 at 12:51 am #
    This is a winner!

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