I’m a product of the sixties, a hippie-girl at heart.
This whole chard-eating, brown rice-making, kefir-drinking way of life is nothing new to me. In fact, the first two cookbooks I bought when I launched out on my own were the Vegetarian Epicure (circa 1972, cover pictured above) and the Tassajara Vegetarian Cookbook from the San Francisco Zen Center (circa 1973). No Joy of Cooking or Julie & Julia stuff for me. I wanted cookbooks that focused on beets, burdock root and buckwheat groats. I made my own bread, wandered the wilderness, belonged to a food co-op, wore flowers in my hair and advocated peace, love and tie-dyes.
I also voted for Nixon, but that’s another story.
Anna Thomas, a 60s soul sister, wrote the Vegetarian Epicure while she was in college. Considered the whole foods bible of the vegetarian fringe in the 1970s, it’s now a classic and still in print. I treasure my original, well-worn, food-stained copy. I don’t know which parts of the book I like more. The recipes, the earth-brown pages, the marijuana references, or the far-out hippie drawings scattered through-out the book.
Marijuana references, you ask?
Read the last paragraph from the “Entertainment” section of my tattered cookbook. Actually, read the whole page. It’s absolutely wonderful and she’s so right-on when it comes to food, friends and entertaining. Anna’s new book, Love Soup, has quickly become one of my current favorites.
Just so you know, I’m not a pot-smoking nutritionist, but I do have fond memories of my first introductions to ghee (clarified butter), curry and veggie rice bowls. I can thank Anna Thomas for that.
And yes, I probably dated this guy.
Buddha Bowls consist of brown rice or another grain (quinoa works well), sautéed veggies and some kind of sauce. They’re meant to be a launching pad for whatever your heart (and stomach) desires. Options include adding meat or tofu, although mine are usually veggie bowls. Sit in lotus position, oomm in gratitude, and eat all your food out of one bowl.
brown rice Buddha bowl (a common dinner at our house)
what you need
2 – 4 cups of cooked brown rice or other cooked grain
1 – 2 tablespoons coconut oil
assorted veggie options (be creative, there are no rules)
1 small onion, chopped or sliced in strips
2 stalks celery, chopped or sliced in strips
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, sliced in strips
1 green bell pepper, sliced in strips
2 portobella mushrooms, sliced in strips
2 carrots, sliced in thin strips
spinach, chard, beet greens, or kale, washed and thinly chopped
vegetable or chicken broth
roasted sunflower seeds
chopped green onions
what you do
1. heat coconut oil on medium heat in a large skillet
2. add onions, garlic and other veggies and sauté lightly (enough so the veggies are cooked, but still slightly crisp)
3. add cooked brown rice, freshly ground pepper, sea salt and a splash of broth to moisten the mix; turn heat down and warm thoroughly
4. if you want to add a specific sauce, do it now and continue to cook until all ingredients are well heated
5. top with garnishes (optional) or gamasio
Other “bowl” recipes you might like
• Elana from Elana’s pantry posted a Mexican chicken and “rice” recipe a couple of years ago with a quirky grain-free twist to the Buddha bowl.
• Ali of Whole Life Nutrition has a recipe for Summer Vegetable Kitcheree that is akin to a Buddha Bowl and is as tasty as it is healthy.
• Fellow nutritionist, Cheryl Harris of Gluten Free Goodness, has a great recipe for a basic quinoa bowl laced with mint and lemon. You might have to save this one for mint season, but it’s a nice addition to the Buddha bowl list.
• Sautéed lettuce and brown rice bowl (from my blog)
Peace, love, Buddha bowls and hippie chicks!
• I took the above photos of the cover and two pages from my 1972 vintage book, The Vegetarian Epicure. I hope I don’t get in trouble.