Mediterranean Grain Bowl


Humble grain bowls seem to be all the rage right now. They’re on menus at all sorts of hip restaurants and not so hip ones. But they’re also incredibly easy to make at home and seriously affordable, a college student’s dream. You can basically throw in whatever veggies you have, cooked or raw (or a combination) and any protein with any grain and any seasoning. If this isn’t your idea of an easy recipe, here is a combo I made last night with all my random groceries.

{serves 1}

  • 1/2 cup farro (uncooked)
  • 1 cup broth (optional)
  • 5 mini portobello mushrooms
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 mini bell peppers
  • 3 cherry heirloom tomatoes
  • 3 artichoke hearts
  • 1 spoonful capers
  • 1 pinch basil
  • 1 pinch thyme
  • 1 pinch oregano
  • some canned tuna
  • grainy mustard
  • salt n pepper
  1. cook farro according to recipe*. use broth for more flavor
  2. clean mushrooms with a wet paper towel and slice
  3. mince garlic and heat olive oil in a medium sized pan then cook that garlic in the pan
  4. add the mushrooms and saute over medium heat, stirring occasionally for a few minutes
  5. when farro is finished, stir in the herbs and season with salt and pepper to taste
  6. slice bell peppers (deseed if necessary) and quarter tomatoes and artichoke hearts
  7. put farro in a bowl and top with sauteed mushrooms, the other veggies, capers and tuna and a dollop of your favorite mustard

*10 minute farro from trader joe’s is my best friend on school nights

© 2016, domenicadreamsofcalamari. All rights reserved.

Spinach Salad w/ Mashed Sardine Garbanzos


This is another kitchen-sink kind of salad. Salads don’t have to be boring as long as you have some good ole pantry staples. Avocado doesn’t hurt either. Or a healthy dose of red pepper flakes. You could even throw a fried egg on top for some serious salad snazz.

{this recipe is for 1 salad with a lot of leftover garbanzos}

for the garbanzo-sardine mash:

  • 1 can garbanzos
  • 1 tin sardines in harrissa olive oil (if you can’t find them, you can sub sardines in olive oil and add a bit of harissa*)
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • a few generous shakes of red pepper flakes
  • salt to taste
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 lemon

for the salad:

  • 2 handfuls spinach
  • 1/2 avocado
  1. heat a medium sized skillet and toss in the pine nuts, shaking the pan a few times until the nuts start getting a little brown and smell good, then remove from pan
  2. drain some of the olive oil from the sardines off into the pan
  3. mince garlic and add to the pan
  4. drain the garbanzos and rinse then add to the pan
  5. break sardines into pieces and add to the pan and start mashing garbanzos with a fork, turn down heat, salt to taste
  6. add the pine nuts back in and take the pan off heat, squeeze lemon juice into the pan
  7. serve over spinach and under avocado

*trader joes sells these little suckers for the low price of $1.29, a steal of a tasty protein deal for a college student, or anyone trying to conserve beer/travel money


© 2016 – 2017, domenicadreamsofcalamari. All rights reserved.

Eggplant and Sardine Greek Yogurt Dip


My friends and I went to the Monterey Bay aquarium last week and got completely transfixed by the schools of sardines that swim in sync. Since then I’ve been craving sardines. Kind of messed up but hey, there are a lot of fish in the sea, especially sardines.

Sardines are not only tasty little guys but swimming in health benefits. According to The World’s Healthiest Foods, they promote heart, bone and cell health leading to “optimal health”. They’re also packed with vitamin D, omega 3s, protein and low in calories AND cheap.

Here’s a fun fact; sardines were the first canned fish and Napoleon Bonaparte was the genius behind this. They were a convenient way to feed his people. Thanks Napoleon

  • 1/4 cup greek yogurt
  • 1/2 of a large eggplant
  • 2 large sardines packed in oil
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • salt/pepper
  • 2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 medium sized shallot
  • 1/4 of a lemon
  1. in a small pan heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium high heat and chop eggplant roughly
  2. add the eggplant to the pan with 1/4 cup water and generous sprinkles of salt and pepper, cover and let cook until fairly mushy
  3. let cool and add to food processor
  4. slice shallots and heat another tablespoon of olive oil in the pan, add shallots and cook over medium heat until they’re just starting to brown
  5. add them into the food processor, squeeze the lemon in and add the mustard and yogurt then blend until smooth
  6. break the sardines into chunks and add to the mix then blend until incorporated

© 2015, domenicadreamsofcalamari. All rights reserved.

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