Prep: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 30-60 minutes.
NB: Ours took approximately 50 minutes to cook. The cooking duration is dependant upon the type of rice and baking dish used; opt for a dish that is longer and wider as opposed to the one we used (*see below). You might also try soaking your rice before cooking it; this should help to speed up the cooking process.
Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamin C, K & E, protein, fibre, calcium, magnesium, potassium, zinc, iron and is low in saturated fats!
This recipe has an abundance of flavours and textures; it’s so tasty and of course very nutritious! Serve it as a main meal or in a smaller portion as a side dish. Adapt the flavours and vegetables as you see fit! Try making it with an Asian, Thai, Mexican, African or Oriental Flavour!
This meal provides you with approximately 347% of your RDA for Vitamin C and 5 servings of fruit/vegetables/ serving!
Heat the oven to 200°C/400°F; place the garlic onto a baking tray. Spray it with some low-fat cooking oil. Place it into the oven. Roast for 20-30 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove.
In the meantime, place the green beans into a microwavable dish. Snap them into halves. Place into the microwave and defrost. Drain.
Peel and dice the onion. Wash, remove the stem, de-seed and chop the bell peppers into slices. Wash, trim the ends and chop the aubergine into quarters. Wash, trim the ends and dice the courgette. Wash and slice the mushrooms.
Wash, remove the stem and chop the tomatoes into thin slices.
***If you have a large oven proof dish that is also capable of stove-top cooking- use that!***
Otherwise, place a large, non-stick frying pan over a medium-low heat. Spray it with some low-fat cooking oil.
Add the green beans, onion, bell peppers, aubergine, courgette and mushrooms. Add more cooking spray if needed. Stir together. Gently fry for approx. 10 minutes or until softened.
In the meantime, wash, dry and roughly chop the chives and parsley. Wash, dry and remove the thyme leaves from the stem. Drain, wash and chop the olives into slices. Wash the spinach. Wash and slice the lemon into quarters.
Add the tomato approximately 5 minutes into the cooking time. Stir together. Fry for a further 5-6 minutes or until softened.
Add the chives, parsley, thyme, cranberries and paprika. Stir through.
***If you’re using a large oven proof (stove-top) dish, add the rice, boiling stock and water. Bring to the boil and then remove from the heat. Season it with some salt and black pepper to taste. Add the spinach. Place the garlic bulb into the centre; gently press it down into the mixture (until partially submerged). Place it into the oven. Bake for approximately 30 minutes, or until the rice is cooked; stir halfway. NB: Remove the garlic temporarily to stir the rice.***
Alternatively, transfer the mixture into a large casserole dish/oven proof dish. Season it with some salt and black pepper to taste.
Top with the rice and spinach.
Pour over the boiling stock and water.
Place the garlic bulb into the centre; gently press it down into the mixture (until partially submerged).
Place into the oven. Bake for approximately 30 minutes, or until the rice is cooked.
In the meantime, lightly toast the nut & seed mixture in a dry frying pan until lightly browned. Remove and transfer into a small dish.
Remove the baking dish halfway through the cooking time. NB: Remove the garlic temporarily.
Add the olives, nuts and seeds.
Give everything a good stir! Submerge the garlic bulb. Place it back into the oven until the rice is cooked.
Remove from the oven.
Remove the garlic and give the rice a good stir. Break apart the bulb. Remove the skin. Add as much garlic to the dish as you prefer.
Serve immediately. Ladle into serving bowls. Garnish with herbs and a slice of lemon.
Refrigerate any leftovers in a resealable container (ideally within an hour after cooking); reheat and consume within 1-2 days. Alternatively freeze in one or more resealable containers; defrost and consume within 1-2 months.
NB: When reheating, always check to make sure the rice is steaming hot all the way through and do not reheat the rice more than once.
Freeze any remaining garlic! Defrost and use it in future soups, stews, casseroles or some home-made houmous and/or dips!
- Use your preferred vegetable mixture! Just defrost (if necessary) and gently fry to soften them prior to baking.
- Adapt the herb and seed medley as you see fit.
- Try adapting this recipe and make it in your slow cooker!