This herby courgette and spelt grain bowl topped with a perfectly poached egg is packed full of flavour yet so quick and simple to make – perfect for a quick lunch or easy dinner. I helped to develop this recipe with the chefs at the Waitrose Cookery School for a Waitrose/Alpro health day focusing on fibre; a hugely important but forgotten nutrient.
Dietary fibre contributes to good digestive health due to its physical properties and its effect on the gut microbiota. There’s evidence that fibre can reduce the risk of bowel cancer and it has been associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular diseases. (more info here!)
With average UK intakes currently below 19g/day, we could all do with getting a little more fibre to meet the recommended 30g/day. One of the easiest ways to get more fibre into your diet is to adopt a more plant based diet – this recipe alone provides over 44% of the daily recommended intake!
There’s a lot of negativity around the term ‘plant based’, partially because it got caught up in the ‘clean eating’ movement but also because people don’t know what it means anymore. Yes, vegetarianism and veganism are both plant based diets, but they’re not the only plant based diets. A plant based diet can be a simple as making vegetables the key component of your meals and reducing your meat intake. It’s about making healthier and more sustainable food choices that are good for you and the planet too.
TIP: for perfectly poached eggs, make sure they’re really fresh and that the water is lightly simmering. Adding a little white wine vinegar to the poaching water helps them keep their shape too.
Ingredients (Serves 2):
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 echalion shallot, finely sliced
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 1 courgette, cut into 1cm pieces
- ½ tbsp Waitrose Cooks’ Ingredients Herby Za’atar
- 250g pack Waitrose cooked Spelt, Quinoa, Red Rice & Wild Rice
- 50g kale
- 30g cashews, toasted and roughly chopped
- 2 medium free range eggs
- white wine vinegar (optional)
- Warm the oil in a medium saucepan over a medium heat. Add the shallot and cook for 2-3 minutes or until soft. Add the garlic, courgette and za’atar to the pan and continue to cook until lightly coloured, soft and fragrant.
- Add the pack of spelt, quinoa and rice together with the spinach or kale and cook, stirring throughout, for 3-4 minutes, until the greens have wilted and the grains are hot.
- Meanwhile, bring a large pan of water to a gentle simmer. Take 2 small cups and break an egg into each of them. Gently pour the eggs into the water and poach for 3-4 minutes or until the whites are just firm and the yolks are cooked to your liking.
- Divide the hot grains between two bowls, sprinkle with the cashews and top with the poached eggs. Season with salt and black pepper then serve immediately.
Nutrition per serving
504kcals/26.1g fat/4.9g saturated fat/39.3g carbohydrate/3.3g sugars/13.3g fibre/21.3g protein/0.68g salt
44% of Recommended Daily Fibre Intake
Recipe by Waitrose, Waitrose Cookery School and Alpro.