Delicious harissa chickpeas, black Japonica rice, and sautéed shiitake mushrooms with cilantro. A spicy twist to the traditional “beans and rice”, plus chives and sunflower seeds.
I’ve mentioned this before, but I LOVE spicy food. LOVEEEE it. This is still relatively new for me, as in I didn’t eat anything spicy until I met Frederick in 2009. Quickly over the past 6 years of our marriage, I’ve developed quite the obsession with anything spicy, and I’m constantly experimenting with different levels of cayenne pepper on everything that I eat. I think that a lot of vegetarian food gets a bad rap because it isn’t seasoned well. There are SO many different herbs and spices that you can play around with when cooking, and many that compliment plants, grains and legumes in a delicious way.
I first tried harissa a few years ago with pita and hummus, but this was in the beginning stages of my transition to loving spicy food, so I thought it was WAY too hot. Now, I could eat it by the spoonful (I won’t, don’t worry). It has a beautiful red color, red chili pepper, red bell pepper, garlic, olive oil, vinegar and salt, that’s it! Only 6 ingredients, but a ton of flavor. I used only 2 teaspoons in this recipe, mostly so I didn’t kill anyone making this recipe, but you can add more or less for your comfort level. This definitely isn’t super spicy, but has a nice mellow kick. I plan on putting harissa on everything now – do you have a favorite pepper or spicy sauce? I love to try new flavors!
If you tried my cashew cream sauce, and have left-overs, then it’s the perfect addition to this bowl. It adds extra garlic, lemon and a creaminess that ties it all together! I love adding sauces to my rice bowls, and a hint of lime juice on top! You can also add sunflower seeds or hemp seeds for added protein and a little bit of crunch. If you have extra time, you can bake the harissa chickpeas in the oven for about 30 minutes and they will be super crispy and delicious!