The origins of the Sunrise Bowl can be described in a few words: As often, I had time pressure, between paperwork, household, two meowing cats who wanted to be entertained, hair that still had to be dryed and straightened, since I couldn’t show up at work looking like a mop, I quickly had to prepare a portable lunch for work.
When I took a look into the fridge, I found an unopened box of organic rocket that needed to be used up quickly, a round yellow zucchini, which I had bought out of pure curiosity and hadn’t had any idea what to do with it so far, a few carrots and two mini tomatoes, originally intended for my breakfast scrambled eggs. I decided that these veggies would be the perfect base for my lunch bowl project. I love to create new recipes by combining leftovers, as by the time I realized that these recipes turn out to be the best ones.
If you look at the pictures, you’ll probably ask yourself first, “Quinoa? That’s not paleo, is it?”
Yes and no. Quinoa is a critical issue among Paleos. On the one hand, it is one of the so-called pseudo-grains that don’t contain gluten. This, of course makes them paleo-compatible. But concerning nutrient-density, however, quinoa is unfortunately a double-edged sword. It is rich in proteins, B vitamins and iron, for example, but it also contains a number of anti-nutrients (including phytic acid, lectins and saponins) that prevent or at least limit nutrient uptake by the intestinal mucosa. Therefore, people with autoimmune diseases, inflammatory bowel disease, or even children whose intestinal mucosa is not yet resistant enough, are advised to completely eliminate quinoa from their diet.
But for anyone who eats paleo or simply gluten-free or vegetarian, there is nothing wrong with eating a modest portion of quinoa from time to time (and I do not mean every other day, maybe not even every week). Look what’s good for you and follow what your body tells you. Since I’m exercising a lot, I decided to add a carbohydrate supplement, such as quinoa, to my vegetable and fish or meat dishes from time to time, especially after gym. I just feel that my body needs it. And we do not want to constantly torment or deprive ourselves. Paleo is not a diet, but a conscious lifestyle choice, and sometimes life requires us to adapt to ever-changing circumstances.
At Paleo360 (German), you’ll find an interesting article on the pro’s and con’s of including quinoa into the paleo lifestyle. I found a similar English source here. The author of the English article suggests not eating quinoa, even if you do not struggle with digestive issues, and promotes including starchs, such as bananas and sweet potatos into your diet instead. This is a good idea, but some people have difficulties in digesting certain types of starchy vegetables, such as sweet potatoes, for instance. In such case, a little quinoa could even be easier digestible instead.
Long story short – feel what your body needs, and try to keep the balance.
Now to the Sunrise Bowl recipe. Why Sunrise Bowl? When I arranged the vegetables in the bowl, it reminded me of a rising sun. I hope you enjoy it, and feel as sunny as I did, when I ate it (while watching the sunSET through the window of my office).Print
1 yellow zucchini
1 big handful of rocket
1 piece of ginger (thumb size)
1 lime (juice and shell abrasion)
1-2 tablespoons sunflower seeds
100 g quinoa
1 lemon, juice and peel
salt and pepper
- Wash the rocket, wash the zucchini and cut into slices about 0.2 inches thick.
- Peel carrots and finely dice. Peel and grate ginger.
- Sauté the zucchini in a small amount of ghee on both sides until soft and lightly browned. This takes about five minutes depending on the stove.
- In another pan (a small one), sauté the carrot cubes in a little ghee along with the ginger. Squeeze out the orange juice and, after 2 minutes, season with salt and pepper and pour the orange juice over it and simmer. Put the carrots aside.
- Cut the tomato into thin slices. Wash the quinoa and simmer in a pot of water and a pinch of salt until soft (about 10 minutes).
- In the meantime, finely chop the shallot, peel the avocado, remove the seed and puree with the lime juice, the lime and some salt and pepper.
- Try the quinoa, if it is already finished. If so, drain, season with lemon juice and lemon zest.
- Brown 1-2 tablespoons of sunflower seeds in a frying pan without fat, arrange arugula, carrots, roasted zucchini and tomatoes with the guacamole on the quinoa and spread the sunflower seeds over them.