Quinoa with Swiss Chard & Chickpeas

At just one month away from going a calendar year since my last post, I picked back up the pen (so to speak). I am three days into a 45 day “Wellness Reset” where I’m essentially making more time for the things in life that make me happy. Not surprisingly, I thought of my blog. After another year on the daily grind, I’ve let my own interests slip from the to do list. It’s taken a toll on my stress levels, creative energy and positive attitude. Life’s too short for that. To quote Mary Oliver, “Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” Not sit around and stress about monitor arms, that’s for damn sure. 

During this 45 days, I will be cooking 2+ meals a week (not just utilitarian cooking, but a meal with some creativity and planning), I’ll be writing in a gratitude journal, and listening to educational and inspiring podcasts. So this is where I’m starting. 

Gratitude Journal entry: I am grateful for Farmers Markets. 

My accountability coach, who is leading me through this wellness reset, sent me a version of this recipe this morning. I took my grocery list first to the farmers market (and then Trader Joe’s, clearly). There’s something about a freshly picked bushel of swiss chard, or basket of cherry tomatoes from the farmers market that makes you feel like a better person when you’re cooking with it. It has integrity, it was grown with care, and has only traveled a few miles to get to you. I haven’t gone to them nearly enough, but maybe I’ll start to now!

An old friend of mine used to say he could “hear me living longer” when I’d tell him about the healthy meals I was making. This would be a good example of one of those meals. 

Quinoa with Swiss Chard & Chickpeas
1 cup dried quinoa, rinsed
1/2 cup pistachio nuts, shelled
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups swiss chard, chopped
1/2 cup raisins
1 can chickpeas, rinsed and patted dry
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
Squeeze of lemon
*optional: Sriracha

Prepare quinoa per instructions on package. 

In a large skillet, toast pistachios for 2-3 minutes until fragrant. Remove nuts and set them aside. Return skillet to medium flame and heat olive oil. Sauté garlic until fragrant but not burned (about 1 minute) and add remaining ingredients. Stir until chard is wilted, about 7 minutes. 

Once quinoa is ready, stir it into the chard and chickpea mixture with a squeeze of lemon. Top with pistachios and serve. 

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