Weekday Dinner – Accidentally Vegan Spiced Quinoa Curry Recipe
Whether this is a soup, a stew, or a curry recipe, we don’t know yet. We tried to determine that when we served it but we found ourselves in a bit of a pickle: Jake says it’s definitely a curry, while for me it was more of soupy stew. We ended up settling on curry just because I couldn’t find any more arguments on why we should call it a soup so here we are.
Anyway, point is, as it usually happens to us before grocery-day, we found ourselves with the fridge mostly empty and the two of us very hungry. So we thought: what’s easy and tasty and fairly easy to make? A curry. And it turned out to be absolutely amazing if I say so myself.
A note on the spices: you might want to adjust the amount of cayenne pepper (or take it out altogether) if you’re very sensitive to hot stuff. We’re fairly used to spices and we didn’t find this particularly hot, but we do appreciate that we’re very used to it by now. On the other hand, if you’re a hot-food-junkie, I’d add a few chilli flakes to the mix too, or maybe just an extra pinch of cayenne.
Vegan Moroccan Spiced Quinoa Curry
- Chef's Knife
- Dutch Oven
- Medium pot
For the Soup
- 1 and 1/2 tbsp olive oil (keep 1/2 tbsp for the quinoa)
- 1 red onion
- 3 cloves garlic (keep 1 aside for the quinoa)
- 2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp black peppercorn
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 and 1/2 tsp turmeric (keep 1 tsp aside for the quinoa)
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp ground coriander
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/4 tsp saffron
- 500 ml vegetable broth
- 400 g chopped tomatoes
- 10 cherry tomatoes (halved)
- 1 lemon (juice)
- 1 butternut squash (peeled and diced)
- 4 medium carrots (peeled and diced)
For the Quinoa
- 1/2 tbsp olive oil (from before)
- 1 small shallot or small white onion
- 1 clove garlic (from before)
- 1 tsp turmeric (from before)
- 180 g quinoa (washed and drained)
- 400 ml vegetable broth
- Mint leaves to garnish
For the Soup
- Start by peeling and dicing the onion, butternut squash and carrots and mince the garlic.
- Heat the tablespoon of olive oil in a dutch oven and when it's hot, add the onion. Cook until translucent on a low-medium heat (approx. 10 minutes). When cooked, add all the spices and stir for 1 minute. Add the minced garlic and stir for 1 minute.
- Add the can of chopped tomatoes, the cherry tomatoes, the 500 ml of broth and the lemon juice. Bring to a boil.
- When it boils, add the butternut squash and the carrots. Cover and cook for approximately 20 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
For the Quinoa
- Wash the quinoa thoroughly and drain.
- Heat the olive oil and add the shallot. Cook until translucent (approximately 10 minutes). Add the turmeric and stir for a few seconds. Add the garlic and stir again for one minute.
- Add the quinoa and toast it for 1-2 minutes and then cover with the broth. Cook for 15 to 18 minutes or until the broth is completely absorbed.
- Serve while it's hot. Garnish with a few chopped leaves of fresh mint.
It’s Spooky Season!
We carved our pumpkin and I’m very much making the most out of this season’s ingredients, to the point that by the time we get to Christmas I might hate anything squash-related. But for now, I’m still very excited to use it in a variety of different ways.
If you need more inspiration on how to use your squash, we also have this Indian curry recipe (another vegan one!) to tickle your tastebuds. On that note, we might potentially add a whole new category to our list called Accidentally Vegan, as it seems to be happening more and more often lately. And weirdly enough, while I used to believe that vegan recipes were somehow more difficult due to the necessity of substituting ingredients, these are the recipes that we end up making when we were literally out of… well, anything.
On the authenticity of this spiced quinoa curry recipe
As usual, my assessment of this having a Moroccan flavour is totally based on my limited and very much butchered knowledge of Moroccan food, being someone that lives in the UK that never managed to go to Morocco. So take this with a pinch of salt. We discussed the issue of food authenticity when we had our take on this Moroccan chicken tagine. What I can tell you though, it’s that this vegan curry was absolutely great and I cannot wait to make it again.
If any Moroccan or Moroccan-food expert is here, please do get in touch with us because we really do want to get this right!
I’m not gonna give you a lecture on how important seasonality is, but I’m afraid that’s exactly what it’s gonna sound like – so here are a few bullet points on why eating seasonal food is something we should all do:
- the food is just better! It tastes better and it looks better – what’s not to like??
- it’s better for the environment (we sadly know we can’t save the planet if the big corps don’t do anything about it, but we like to do our bit when we can)
- more nutrients for your body
- it’s good for your mental health
It can be tricky to know when a fruit or vegetable is in season or not – while we all know that pumpkins are clearly autumn produce, would you be able to tell when radishes are in season?
(I personally just found out myself, it’s in summer).
You’ll learn what your go-tos are very quickly but if you need some help we recommend the Seasonal Food Guide app. Of course, I cannot physically talk about seasonality without mentioning Oddbox for the 10th time (who am I kidding, let’s say 30th) – most of my newly-acquired knowledge on seasonal food mostly came from their boxes and their lovely food pun-heavy leaflet.