it is october, a vibrant month chock-full of various shades of the color orange: pumpkins, hay bales, cornfields, falling leaves & early evening sunsets. orange is the color of your sacral chakra, or so i am told in yoga class. a chakra is just an energy center in the body. this one governs your creativity, your ability to live in the present moment, the way you behave in relationships, your sexuality, your tendencies toward violence & addiction, as well as your ability to feel joy & pleasure. one of the ways to balance this chakra is to indulge your sensational side–cooking is one way to soothe this part of yourself. i can do that. i can glow. even if i’m not quite sure how i feel about all this chakra business… although i do like the way the word just rolls off my tongue. chakra. chakra. chakra, chakra, chakra.
this brown rice burrito bowl stars a warm-hued, october-appropriate vegetable: butternut squash. the mild flavor of the squash is the perfect backdrop to garlic, cumin, paprika & red pepper flakes–the southwestern spice blend native to a dish like this. chipotle peppers in adobo sauce are the smoky companion to the muted sweetness of the vegetable. those are my thoughts at least. you’ll have to let me know if you agree…
-3 cups of butternut squash, peeled, seeded & cubed
-1 can of black beans, drained & rinsed
-1 medium yellow or white onion, sliced
-1/2 tbsp vegetable oil (or other fat of choice)
-1.5 cup uncooked brown rice
-3 cups water
-2 tbsp tomato sauce
-1 chipotle pepper
-2 tsp adobo sauce
-1.5 tsp cumin
-1/2 tsp paprika
-1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
-optional garnishes: shredded cheese, sour cream (i use greek yogurt, healthier & it tastes exactly the same to me), salsa, sliced avocado
1. throw all ingredients except for onion & veggie oil into slow cooker.
2. heat oil in a medium sauce pan over medium heat & cook onions until translucent (about 10 minutes).
3. add onions to slow cooker & stir everything together.
4. cook on low for about 6 hours. if you’re going to cook it longer, stir occasionally & add more water if it starts looking dry so your rice doesn’t burn.
5. enjoy in a bowl topped with any or all of the optional garnishes, if you so desire.
*makes about 4 servings