Quinoa Jollof with Mushroom Stir-Fry

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  • 2 cups quinoa (substitute with brown rice)
  • 6 large firm tomatoes
  • 4 large bell peppers
  • 1 large red onion, chopped
  • 6 carrots, diced 
  • 2 sticks of celery root
  • 4 tablespoon soy sauce/tamari/braggs liquid aminos
  • 1 vegetable stock cube
  • 2 tablespoons date sugar (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (or your preferred cold-pressed oil)
  • Spices: 2 bay leaves, 3 tablespoons curry powder, 2 tablespoons turmeric powder, 1 teaspoon chilli pepper powder, 1 teaspoon dried thyme

For the Stir-Fry

  • 4 big handfuls oyster mushrooms
  • 1 big bunch amaranth leaves (simply known as 'greens' in the market)
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce/tamari/Braggs liquid aminos
  • 1/2 teaspoon chilli pepper powder


Step 1: Blend the tomatoes and peppers in just enough water to get the blender going. You want a thick and coarse blend. Pour the blended mixture into a large pot and leave to simmer uncovered for about 15 minutes.

Step 2: Meanwhile, rinse the quinoa using a very fine sieve and set aside. If using brown rice, rinse until just before it is fully cooked. This should take about 10 minutes.

Step 3: After 15 minutes, add the chopped onions to the pot, along with the celery root, soy sauce, stock cube, date sugar, and spices. The date sugar helps to cut down the acidity of tomatoes. Cover the pot and let simmer another 10 minutes. Stir periodically to make sure it doesn't burn.

Step 4: Stir the carrots and quinoa/rice into the sauce, and add just enough water to cover the surface. Spread a sheet of foil over the mouth of the pot and fit the lid over it. Allow to cook on low heat for about 15-20 mins, checking every  5 minutes. You may need to add more water a little at a time, depending on how fast the quinoa/rice cooks. There will be a thin layer of burnt food at the bottom of the pot, don't worry about it! It adds smokingness to the flavor :) If the burnt layer starts to get too thick to scrape with your spoon, lower the heat.

Step 5: When the quinoa/rice is cooked, turn off the heat and add about 2 tablespoons of olive oil or any other cold-pressed oil to the pot. Stir well to combine and adjust spices/ seasonings to your taste. 

The Mushroom Stir-Fry

Tip: This dish cooks really fast, so try to prepare it right before serving. This eliminates the need to warm it up later, which degrades the nutrients in the greens.

Step 1: Rinse the mushrooms in mildly salted water and squeeze well to drain. Tear up or chop into big pieces.

Step 2:Meanwhile, rinse the greens and slice into ribbons just over 1 cm wide.

Step 3: Pour the soy sauce in afrying pan along with about 3 tablespoons of water. Add the onions and chilli pepper, and leave to simmer for about a minute, then add the mushrooms. Toss the mushrooms in the liquid and leave to simmer on low heat for about 5 minutes- the mushrooms should start to brown slightly. If the water ries up before the 5 minutes, add a little more. 

Step 4: Add the chopped greens and sesame seeds and stir-fry until the greens are wilted. Turn off the heat and drizzle the sesame oil over the mushrooms. Toss to combine.


(Source: Naija Vegan Chef)