A balanced bowl of goodness perfect for any time of day. Mostly greens with some healthy whole grains and softly scrambled eggs alongside.
Would you believe me if I told you I was lying on the beach in Bali dreaming about this dish?
It’s true. I was. I guess that’s how my brain works.
We ate well in Indonesia, but I wouldn’t say that our diet was particularly balanced. There was usually a good amount of fruit with breakfast, but I wouldn’t say we ate a lot of vegetables on this trip. Part of that was simply the style of food; nasi goreng (Indonesian fried rice) was a staple that had a hint of veg and was usually topped with a fried egg. I had an amazing vegetable soup in Ubud which I went back for more of the next day, and gado gado; a dish of boiled vegetables, tofu, and egg with a little pot of peanut sauce for dipping.
But like I said before, I came back wanting to eat all the green things. So yes, I was literally lying on a beach in Bali and dreaming of this dish. It’s one of the first things I made upon my return.
This dish, I think, could grace the pages of any nutrition text book. It’s got all of the elements of a healthy meal; plenty of greens, a bit of healthy whole grain, and a high-quality source of protein. The greens comprise more than half of the total dish, which is something we should all be aiming for. The grains and the protein – softly scrambled eggs in this case – make up about 1/4 each. If you’re looking for an example of how to build a balanced plate of food, look no further. This is it.
Grains and greens. It’s quick and easy. The greens wilt down in mere minutes, we make use of leftover whole grains (this is a multigrain mix that pulled from the freezer), and nothing cooks quite as fast as scrambled eggs. Best of all, everything comes together in one pan, which makes cleanup a cinch. I prefer to cook each element on it’s own, but you could, in fact, sort of scramble everything together if you wanted.
For the greens I used a combination of Tuscan kale, pak choy, and a bit of fresh parsley added at the end. You could use any combination of greens you’ve got on hand, just aim for about 3 packed cups before you start cooking. Accordingly, any leftover whole grain would work well here; the mixture I used has oats, wheat, rye, and barley. And if eggs aren’t your thing, you could replace them with some cubes of tofu, lentils, or beans.
Kale is a nutritional powerhouse! It is extraordinarily rich in micronutrients, dietary fiber, anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory nutrients, and cancer fighting glucosinolates. Kale is a good source of vitamin C, beta-carotene, manganese, and contains nearly twice the vitamin K (essential for blood clotting and also an important anti-inflammatory agent) than any other cruciferous vegetable (broccoli, cabbage, etc). Iron, magnesium, vitamin E, folate, and phosphorous are among the complement of vital minerals found in kale.
Eggs are a natural, nutrient-rich whole food and an amazing source of high quality protein. In fact, many public health authorities use eggs as the reference standard against which protein qualities are evaluated. Eggs contain all 8 B-vitamins, along with folic acid. Vitamin B12 and choline are particularly abundant in eggs. Eggs are also a very good source of selenium and iodine.
- 3 tsp extra virgin olive oil, divided
- ½ small red onion, diced
- 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 packed cups chopped mixed greens (kale, pak choy, spinach, etc)
- ¼ cup fresh parsley, roughly chopped
- ½ cup leftover cooked whole grains (wheat berries, spelt, barley, etc)
- 2 eggs, whisked
- salt and pepper
- Heat 1 tsp olive oil in a small skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add the onion and sauté for 2-3 minutes, until just translucent
- Add the garlic and sauté for 2-3 minutes more.
- Add the chopped greens and sauté until heated through and wilted, about 2-3 minutes.
- Season with salt and pepper, and then transfer this mixture into a bowl.
- Add 1 tsp of olive oil into the same skillet, and then add the leftover whole grains. Sauté for 2-3 minutes until heated though.
- Transfer to the bowl with the greens.
- Reduce the heat to medium and ddd the final tsp of olive oil to the skillet.
- Add the whisked eggs, wait a moment, then gently begin pushing the egg towards the middle of the pan. Continue until the eggs are softly scrambled.
- Season with salt and pepper, and then transfer to the bowl with the greens and grains.
- Sprinkle fresh parsley over the top, and serve immediately.
-Feel free to poach or fry the egg instead of scrambling.
-Vegans, replace the egg with tofu, beans, or lentils.
Recipe adapted from Whole Grain Mornings