Klutzing Around With: Sweet Potato Chickpea Buddha Bowl

In my quest to make healthy, filling lunches, ‘Buddha Bowls’ popped up on more than one occasion. I’d never heard the term prior to this search, but according to Minimalist Baker, the blogger responsible for the Sweet Potato Chickpea Buddha Bowl, a Buddha Bowl is traditionally described as “a bowl which is packed so full that it has a rounded ‘belly’ appearance on the top much like the belly of a Buddha.”

What’s not to love about that? Time to klutz around and make my own variation of this delightful sounding bowl!

The Recipe

I actually made a bit of a mistake with this one—it’s meant to be a dinner recipe, so it’s much more complicated and lengthy than what I would usually do for lunch. I did, however, already buy the ingredients, it looks amazing, and it’s only supposed to take 30 minutes, so I guess it’s time to get cooking!

Making the Bowl

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The Ingredients

As I mentioned above, this is supposed to be a dinner bowl, so it requires WAY more ingredients than I’d usually use to assemble lunch. But this will be an adventure and a bit of a challenge, which is exciting. This recipe is broken in three parts: vegetables, chickpeas, and the tahini sauce (the sauce is optional, but I decided to try out anyway).

For the vegetables, I used:

  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced in wedges
  • 1 large sweet potatoes, cut into fourths (I baked 2, but the potatoes were so big I had leftovers)
  • 1 bundle broccolini, large stems removed, chopped
  • 2 big handfuls kale, larger stems removed
  • 1/4 tsp each salt and pepper

For the chickpeas, I used:

  • 1 can of Goya Chick Peas Low Sodium, drained, rinsed, and patted dry
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 3/4 tsp chili powder
  • 3/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp each salt + pepper
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric

For the tahini sauce, I used:

  • 1/4 cup tahini (shout out to my new friend at The Fresh Market who helped me find one of two containers IN THE ENTIRE STORE. You’re the best!)
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup, Giant brand
  • 1/2 ReaLemon Juice
  • 4 Tbsp hot water to thin

For equipment, I used

  • An oven
  • 2 baking sheets
  • 1 cutting board
  • A sharp paring knife
  • A large skillet
  • A medium bowl
  • A long wooden spoon
  • Measuring spoons and cups
  • A small bowl
  • 1 whisk

So start off,  I preheat the oven to 400 degrees and begin to cut the sweet potatoes…and notice there is something not quite right with them.

They’re not orange? The skin looks right and they certainly smell like sweet potatoes, but the inside looks more like a yellow potato. I have no idea what’s going on here. Maybe I bought organic without noticing, or some variation of a sweet potato?

If someone knows the answer to this mystery, please let me know! After mulling over this puzzle, I move along and begin slicing the onions. Forewarning: as my friends and family can attest, I am an incredibly s l o w cutter of produce, so my timing for this recipe will likely be different from the blogger’s promised 30 minutes.

After I finish cutting the sweet(?) potatoes and onions, I arrange them on the bare baking sheet and drizzle them with the olive oil, making sure the sweet potatoes are evenly coated and placed skin-side down.

I put the potatoes and onions in the over for 10 minutes. While waiting, I drain, rinse, and dry the chickpeas. Placing them in the medium bowl, I add in the seasonings and toss everything together.

After getting all of this coordinated, my 10 minutes are up and I remove the baking tray from the oven to flip the potatoes and add the broccolini (which came pre-cut). After drizzling the broccolini with oil and seasoning with salt and pepper, I put the tray back in the oven for another 10 minutes and return to the chickpeas.

Now that the chickpeas have been tossed, it’s time to throw them on the skillet with a tablespoon of olive oil and saute over medium heat. As per instructions, I stir frequently so they don’t brown too quickly and after about 10 minutes, they are done.

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I am the master multitasker!

In the midst of sauteing the chickpeas, the timer goes off again for the potatoes, onions, and broccolini. The tray is now too full to add the kale, so I grab another baking sheet. I place the kale on the new sheet, drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and put the tray in the oven with the potatoes, onion, and broccolini for five minutes.

Now that this is settled, it’s time to move on to the tahini sauce. For this, I simply add the tahini, maple syrup, and lemon juice into the small bowl and whisk together. I pour the hot water into the mixture and the sauce is reduced down to a dressing-like consistency.

With that, my final timer goes off. I pull out the vegetables, let them cool, and assemble the bowl, cutting the potatoes into bite-sized pieces. After that I divide the veggies and pour in the tahini sauce to finally complete this Sweet Potato Chickpea Buddha Bowl.

The Final Product

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Tahini sauce is at the bottom of the bowl and not visible (sorry).

Well that was exhausting. Definitely one of the more involved recipes I’ve adventured in recently. And as for time…

bowl5

Over 20 minutes past the promised 30—yikes! As I mentioned, however, I’m an exceedingly slow chopper so that’s likely my fault. I’d be curious to see if someone more proficient can get closer to the 30 minute mark, or if the time on this recipe does not take cutting the veggies into consideration.

The Verdict….

I did not eat this fresh as the blogger advised, instead taking it to work the next morning.

bowl3.jpeg

I feel so put together with my make-ahead lunches. Look how pretty and classy this looks. I love it. I will let myself bask in this accomplishment for awhile, especially since this made over 6 BOWLS worth of food. This will be my lunch for days to come.

I was a little worried about not eating this one fresh, but I had nothing to fear. After popping it into the microwave for a minute, I bite in and am met with food glory.

The vegetables are perfectly oven roasted, my personal favorite way of preparing veggies, and the spices combined with the tahini sauce gives the entire creation a heat that I thoroughly enjoy.

I really need to applaud Minimalist Baker for this recipe. Not only is it delicious, but everything was perfectly timed during the actual cooking process. I was constantly busy with something to do and it was expertly coordinated to make the most out of the time spent on cooking. This is definitely my new favorite klutzing around experience and I look forward to trying it again, this time aiming a little closer to that 30 minute mark.

Official Ingredients/Directions

VEGETABLES
  • 2 Tbsp olive, melted coconut, or grape seed oil
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced in wedges
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, halved
  • 1 bundle (227 g) broccolini, large stems removed, chopped
  • 2 big handfuls kale, larger stems removed
  • 1/4 tsp each salt + pepper
CHICKPEAS
  • 1 15-ounce (425 g) chickpeas, drained, rinsed + patted dry
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 3/4 tsp chili powder
  • 3/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp each salt + pepper
  • 1/2 tsp oregano (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric (optional)
TAHINI SAUCE (OPTIONAL)
  • 1/4 cup (56 g) tahini
  • 1 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 2-4 Tbsp hot water to thin
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and arrange sweet potatoes and onions on a bare baking sheet. Drizzle both with a bit of oil, making sure the flesh of the sweet potatoes are well coated and placed skin side down on the sheet.
  2. Bake for 10 minutes, then remove from oven flip sweet potatoes and add broccolini. Drizzle broccolini with a bit of oil and season with a pinch each salt and pepper.
  3. Bake for another 8-10 minutes, then remove from oven and add kale. Drizzle kale with a touch more oil and season with a pinch each salt and pepper. Bake for another 4-5 minutes then set aside.
  4. While vegetables are roasting, heat a large skillet over medium heat and add chickpeas to a mixing bowl and toss with seasonings.
  5. Once hot, add 1 Tbsp oil and chickpeas and sauté, stirring frequently. If they’re browning too quickly, turn down heat. If there isn’t much browning going on, increase heat. I found 10 minutes total at slightly over medium heat was perfect.
  6. Once the chickpeas are browned and fragrant, remove from heat and set aside.
  7. Prepare sauce by adding tahini, maple syrup and lemon juice to a mixing bowl and whisking to combine. Add hot water until a pourable sauce is formed. Set aside.
  8. To serve: Slice sweet potatoes into bite size pieces. Divide vegetables between 3 serving bowls and top with chickpeas and tahini sauce.
  9. Best when fresh, though leftovers will keep for a few days in the fridge.

 

Have a food you’d like to see me klutz around with? Let me know in the comments, or reach out through my contact page!

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