Looking for something ridiculously festive and bright to eat this Beltane? Try these. And then go have some fun!
1 cup dried adzuki beans
Water for soaking and simmering beans
1 cup dried white quinoa
1 3/4 cup vegetable broth to cook quinoa
1/2 block extra firm tofu
1 clove garlic, crushed and minced
1/2 lemon for juicing
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon dried herbs (I used a mix of French herbs with thyme, rosemary, and marjoram)
1/2 bunch of asparagus, cut into 1 1/2” pieces
1/2 red pepper, cut into 3/4” pieces
1 small can olives
2 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil for frying tofu
2 bunches fresh dill
Hollandaise makings, or a packet mix
Edible flowers to garnish (optional)
As always, add salt and pepper to taste to each element.
About an hour before cooking, soak your adzuke beans in 4 cups water. While they’re soaking, press the tofu and let it drain on paper towels for about 15 minutes, and then cut into cubes. Place in a bag with garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, and dried herbs, and place in the fridge.
- Replace the water and rinse the beans, returning them to the pot. Fill the pot with cold water, covering the beans by 2 inches. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce temp to simmer and allow to simmer until tender (about an hour).
- Rinse your quinoa in a sieve, and then add to a pot with vegetable stock. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 20 minutes.
- While beans and quinoa are simmering, cut and blanch your asparagus, chop your red pepper, and drain your olives. Set aside.
- Pan-fry your marinated tofu in vegetable oil, allowing the sides to brown (about 3 minutes per side over medium heat). Use a non-stick pan, but leave the tofu to cook on each side without interruption. When the sides are done, they won’t stick to the pan. Add additional oil when necessary.
- Make your hollandaise. You can do this from scratch, but I used a packet that just needed added milk and butter and followed the directions. I added a little lemon juice as well to make it more acidic. The truth is that making hollandaise is a little intimidating for me, so this was a good option.
- Mix quinoa and adzuki beans and layer in the bottom of 2 large bowls. Arrange vegetables on top. Then add tofu and drizzle with hollandaise. Add dill (pinched off the stem), and then finish with edible flowers to garnish, if desired.
Why did I choose these ingredients? Let’s discuss.
- White quinoa and red adzuki beans represent the red and white of the traditional Maypole. (Really, they turn out beige and brown when they’re cooked, but go with me on this one.) They’re also both seeds, and symbolise Spring as the time when we plant our intentions.
- Dill is a great Spring herb, and is rumored to help with love, attraction, and good luck.
- Tofu is delicious, and I felt like I wanted a light protein for this dish. Anything too heavy would prohibit the proper frolicking.
- Red pepper is bright and colorful, and I felt like it helped with the celebratory feeling of this dish.
- Asparagus and olives are phallic and vaginal, respectively. I found a traditional Beltane recipe a long time ago that was basically asparagus and olives sauteed together with garlic and dill, and it stuck with me. So I wanted to bring that forward into this recipe to celebrate fertility, attraction, and sexuality. Also, asparagus are Spring vegetables, and they’re literally sprouts that come straight up from the ground. Very Springy!
- Hollandaise sauce is pale yellow, acidic, and flavorful, and I felt like it highlighted the celebration feel of the dish.
- Nothing symbolizes Beltane like a riot of colorful flowers. Very festive!
- For a vegan bowl, substitute the hollandaise for a light lemon vinaigrette.
- For an omnivore bowl, feel free to substitute grilled chicken for the tofu.
- Buy canned red beans of some sort (rinse them well!) and frozen prepared quinoa. Ain’t nobody got time for that shit.
- You could also prepare everything ahead of time and assemble this as a cold dish with chilled ingredients. However, the hollandaise doesn’t really work well as a cold sauce, so I would substitute it for a vinaigrette.
- If you want to make it even more festive, add some beet juice to the quinoa for a nice pink color, or turmeric or saffron for gold.
Drizzle some fresh halved strawberries with coconut almond coffee creamer and sprinkle with honey or brown sugar. MMMMMMM!!!!
The prep work on this was tedious. We didn’t eat it the night I intended to, because it took so long to soak and simmer the beans and I started too late. So at 9pm, we went out for fast food. It looks prettier during the day anyways- better for photos. I just reheated the beans when I mixed them with the quinoa. Fortunately, that meant that the tofu marinated overnight and was SOOOO good.
Remember to listen to sexy, lively music while making this! Your energy will always show up in your dish, so be sure to add as much sexy fun as possible. 🙂 Blessed be! 🙂