Tuesday, January 14, 2020

How To Caramelize Onions & An Easy, Healthy Quinoa, Beet and Onion Wrap Recipe (Vegan)


Each January I put a renewed focus on healthy eating, primarily by increasing my intake of fruit and vegetables. For the most part, though, I try to eat healthy foods all year round, and I don't like to create stress around eating. I believe that nutritious food can go hand in hand with delicious food. Take this easy, yummy sandwich wrap, for example. This recipe makes for a simple-to-prepare, healthy lunch or dinner option.

This easy quinoa wrap requires only a handful of ingredients - the key to its delicious flavour is caramelized onions. Truth be told, I use onions in almost every dinner recipe I make. In fact, my son says my hands always smell like onions. I’m not offended - onions make every meal better. (You can always dip your fingers in lemon juice if the smell bothers you.) This month, I'm bringing you two ideas for simple, healthy meals to make with Idaho-Eastern Oregon Spanish Sweet Onions, beginning with this tortilla sandwich wrap. I'll have another delicious recipe for you soon.

*This is a sponsored post. All opinions are authentic and my own. Thank you for supporting the awesome companies that partner with Woman in Real Life.



Spanish Sweets are a perfect pantry staple - keep them on hand to add lovely flavour to your favourite meals. Caramelize onions to up the wow factor of sandwiches, veggie burgers, bean salads, pasta, pizza and more. Make a big batch of caramelized onions to keep in the fridge and use for a few days. You can even freeze the extras! Caramelizing your Spanish Sweet Onions couldn't be easier. Here's how I do it:

How to caramelize onions

Trim the ends off of two large Spanish Sweets. Cut through the middle lengthwise and remove peels. Slice onions lengthwise into long strips, approximately ¼ inch wide. Heat a teaspoon of vegan butter and a teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil in a large, wide pan. (Cast iron works well.) Alternatively, you can use just vegan butter/margarine or just olive oil. Add onions and reduce heat to medium. 


Stir onions periodically (about every 3 to 5 minutes), but not continuously, as you want the onions to brown. Splash in a little water or vegetable stock if the onions stick to the pan for too long. (A bit of sticking is okay to help the browning process.)


Season with a pinch of salt, if desired. Cook until the onions are nicely browned, 30 to 45 minutes. Watch carefully to avoid burning the onions.


As the Spanish Sweets cook, the heat causes their sugars to break down, and they become softer and sweeter, adding a nice, deep, sweet flavour to your meals.

In addition to caramelized onions, these healthy sandwich wraps call for quinoa, hummus and cooked beets. I like to use boiled beets because I find they have a nice texture for sandwiches, but you can also use roasted beets.

How to boil beets


To boil beets, trim the greens (if applicable), leaving an inch or so of stem. Wash beets and add to a pot full of cold water. Add a couple of dashes of salt and 1/2 tablespoon vinegar. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-high and boil gently for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, depending on the size of the beets. Watch the water level - you may have to add more water as the beets cook. (Do not fill the pot too full of beets as you’ll need quite a bit of water.) Check tenderness with a fork. Drain hot water. Fill pot with cold water and allow beets to cool. Trim ends, remove skins and dice.


Meal prep suggestions


This sandwich wrap works well with your food prep Sunday plans. Cook quinoa, boil beets, caramelize onions and make hummus (if using homemade). Store everything in tightly covered containers in the fridge for use over the next one to three days.

When it comes time to prepare the wraps for lunch or dinner, all you’ll need to do is throw the quinoa, parsley, beets, caramelized onions and hummus in the wraps and heat for a couple of minutes in the microwave. (Add the hummus after heating if preferred.)

Make extra of all the ingredients to incorporate in other lunches and dinners over the next few days. For example, the quinoa, beets and caramelized onions can go on top of mixed greens for a super simple, healthy meal salad. Or add quinoa to a quick vegetable soup.



Idaho-Eastern Oregon Spanish Sweet Onions


Idaho-Eastern Oregon Spanish Sweet Onions are available from mid-October to early March. They contain more sugar and less water than other onions, and they complement the flavours of your meals beautifully without being at all overwhelming. The growers of these natural wonders plant yellow, red and white varieties - yellow onions are best for cooking; reds are ideal for salads and white onions are most often served diced and uncooked. Look out for in-store tastings January 18th and 19th!

Questions for you


How often do you use onions when cooking? Where do you use caramelized onions?


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How to Caramelize Onions

Yum


Ingredients
  • 2 large Spanish Sweet Onions
  • 1 tsp vegan butter
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • salt
  • vegetable stock or water, as needed

Instructions

Trim ends off onions. Cut through the middle lengthwise and remove peel. Slice lengthwise into long strips, approximately 1/4 inch wide (or as desired). Heat vegan butter and olive oil over medium-high heat in wide pan. Add onions and reduce heat to medium.

Stir periodically (about every 3 to 5 minutes), but not continuously, as you want the onions to brown. Splash in a little water or vegetable stock if the onions stick to the pan for too long. (A bit of sticking is okay to help the browning process.) Season with a pinch of salt. Cook until the onions are nicely browned, 30 to 45 minutes. Watch carefully to avoid burning the onions.



Easy, Healthy Quinoa, Beet and Caramelized Onions Wrap

for 2 wraps
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Ingredients
  • 2 large tortillas
  • 4 tablespoons regular or spicy hummus (homemade or store-bought)
  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa (cooked with vegetable bouillon for added flavour)
  • 1/2 tsp dried parsley
  • 2 small boiled beets, diced
  • 1/2 cup caramelized Spanish Sweet Onions

Instructions

Spread 2 tablespoons of hummus on each tortilla wrap. Divide quinoa, parsley, diced beets and caramelized onions between the tortilla wraps. Tuck the sides of each wrap in and roll up. Serve with additional hummus on the side for dipping.





3 comments:

  1. Mmmm! This sounds like a such a great flavor combo!

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