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Merle O’Neal – Buffalo Chickpea Grain Bowls

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A delicious vegan dish that tastes good and is good for you.
Ingredients

GRAINS

  • 3 cups low-sodium vegetable stock 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1½ cups uncooked farro, about 9½ ounces

BUFFALO SAUCE

  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil or cooking oil of choice
  • 1 medium yellow onion, about 7½ ounces, grated (about 1 cup)
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 carrot, grated (about ½ cup) kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional) 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • ½ cup low-sodium vegetable stock 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
  • ½ cup low-sodium hot sauce (look for mild if you are heat-sensitive)
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans no-salt-added chickpeas, drained and rinsed

SUGGESTED TOPPINGS

  • 2 celery stalks, thinly sliced on a bias 1 carrot, julienned
  • 5 small radishes, thinly sliced vegan ranch

VEGAN RANCH

  • 1½ cups vegan mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened non-dairy milk, plus more if needed
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons freshly chopped flat-leaf parsley, plus more for optional garnish
  • 1 teaspoon freshly chopped dill, plus more for optional garnish

DIRECTIONS:

1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, bring the vegetable stock and salt to a boil. Add the farro, stir, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cover. Cook until tender, 20 to 25 minutes, or according to the package directions. If the liquid has not evaporated by the time the farro is tender, drain the farro and discard the liquid.

2. Heat the oil in a tall pan over medium. When the oil is shimmering, add the onion, garlic, and carrot, and cook, stirring frequently, until the excess liquid from the onion has evaporated and the vegetables are softened, 6 to 7 minutes. Season the vegetables with salt.

3. Add the cayenne (if using), paprika, and cumin, stirring to combine. Toast the spices until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add the tomato paste, stirring to evenly combine all the ingredients. Toast the tomato paste until it becomes dark red and fragrant, about 2 minutes.

4. Pour in the vegetable stock and deglaze the pan. Add the vinegar, sugar, and hot sauce, stirring to combine. Bring to a low simmer over medium heat.

5. Add the chickpeas, stirring to combine, and simmer until the sauce is reduced and the chickpeas are warmed through, about 12 minutes. Season with salt.

6. Let the farro and buffalo chickpeas cool completely before dividing into four airtight individual containers.

VEGAN RANCH

Makes about 2 Cups

DIRECTIONS:

1. Place the mayo, milk, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, paprika, vinegar, and lemon juice in a blender or food processor. Blend or pulse until smooth and creamy.

2. Add the parsley and dill and pulse until well blended. The consistency at this stage is dip- like; add more milk if a dressing consistency is desirable.

3. Transfer to a small bowl or serving container and place in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

4. Garnish with more dill and parsley, if desired. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 14 days.

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