Grilled veggies with rice & lentils & kale

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I. Love. Summer.!!! Hot sun, pool, beach, lake, water sports, long days, warm nights, baseball… and most of all the fruits & veggies!!! Zucchini is great raw but also yummy grilled!! I don’t have an actual grill but my grill pan works almost as well. This meal would be even more amazing if you have a real grill, but if not, it’s still delish!!

Here is what you need:
Zucchini (and/or any summer squash)
Portobello mushrooms
(For amounts I’d estimate 1/2 zucchini and 1 mushroom per person)
Kale
Cooked brown rice
Cooked lentils
(I just used leftovers I had lying around but you can also just make quinoa instead! That’s what I was planning to do but then I found the rice & lentils in the fridge)
Onion
Garlic
Olive oil
Salt & pepper

Marinade for the mushrooms (this amount is good for 4 mushrooms so you can adjust based on how many you are making):
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic minced or crushed
Salt & pepper

First make the marinade and marinate the shrooms for at least 30 min. Even better if you plan ahead you can do it overnight.

Thinly slice the zucchini long ways (it’s easier to grill long pieces but you want them thin). When they are done you can cut them into smaller pieces if desired. Heat up & spray the grill pan with oil, lay out the zucchini, then spray the tops with oil too. Cook them until they are cooked through nice and tender and have nice dark grill marks (don’t forget to flip–they need to cook on both sides!). Then once the mushrooms have adequately marinated, grill the mushrooms. They will take longer on each side than the zucchini.

In the meantime prepare the rice/lentils or quinoa.
If using leftover rice/lentils or quinoa: Chop the onion & sauté in olive oil until slightly browned & softened. Add salt & pepper while the onion is cooking. Then add the garlic (crushed or minced) and mix & cook briefly. Then add the cooked rice & lentils/ quinoa to the pan & mix & heat through.
If using uncooked quinoa: Sauté the onions & garlic in olive oil (adding salt & pepper) first, then add the water or veg broth & quinoa (2 cups water/broth for 1 cup quinoa), mix, cover and cook through (about 15 min or until water is absorbed & quinoa is fluffy).

Barely steamed kale:
Tear up your kale into bite-sized pieces and remove tough stems. Steam for 2 minutes only! This will soften it & make it sweeter & less bitter but doesn’t cook it enough to drain the nutrients. You can tell your nutrients are still in there if your water is still clear. Once your steaming water starts to turn green, you’re losing precious green nutrition! So in general I’m a fan of steaming green veggies to make them tastier & easier to eat but you just have to do it ever so briefly!

Phew! Assemble all ingredients on your plate(s)!!! You can eat all the components separately OR you can chop up the grilled veggies and mix everything together into a kind of a delicious salad!!! If you like make some extra marinade to use as dressing. Enjoy!!!

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