As we celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month, Bauman College graduate, Chef Paty Stewart brings us a Healthy Mexican Bowl recipe honoring her mother, her Mexican heritage and the Brazilian culture.
Learn more about Paty’s culinary quest, which spans three countries, two careers and one unending passion for healthy, nutrient dense food from our previous post.
I Can Still Remember The Wonderful Smell!
I grew up in Mexicali, Mexico and remember at my grandparents’ house and at home with my mom, there were always beans cooked to serve with any meal (breakfast, lunch, or dinner). Mom would cook them and make batches to freeze so she would always have them on hand. I can still remember the wonderful smell!
After I moved to Brazil, I learned that beans and rice are a meal that people eat on regular basis, particularly for lunch. So, taking cooking classes there, I learned how to cook beans with a pressure cooker which is the normal technique for Brazilians. There too, they always have fresh beans on hand every day. It was fun to share with mom how I was learning to cook beans in Brazil and compare to how she used to do it. There would be different seasonings, spices, vegetables to add and make them versatile!
Honor My Mom, My Mexican Roots And The Brazilian Culture
Once at Bauman College, I was preparing for finals, and I needed to create a recipe for an original dish. I wanted to include beans and honor my mom, my Mexican roots and the Brazilian culture, the place I lived for over 4 years and taught me so much in many ways, while knowing all of the nutritional benefits as well. The Healthy Mexican Bowl I created includes simple, affordable ingredients while being full of nutrients and colorful!
Brown rice is a great source of B vitamins as well as manganese, iron, among other nutrients. Beans are a source of protein, complex carbohydrates, and fiber. Adding pico de gallo, corn, and this avocado cilantro lime dressing, the flavor and nutrients get enhanced! Feel free to make it vegetarian using a hard-boiled egg instead of chicken.
Healthy Mexican Bowl
Servings | 4
Allergens | Corn, Nightshades, Poultry
Healthy Mexican Bowl
- 1 cup uncooked black beans, soaked overnight
- 3 tsp salt, divided + more to taste
- 1 piece kombu, 1”
- 1 cup uncooked brown rice, soaked overnight
- 2 ears of fresh corn, still in the husks
- 1 Tbs olive oil
- 1 bunch cilantro, chopped, divided
- 3 Tbs lime juice, about 3 limes, divided
- Pepper to taste
- 1 lb chicken thigh, cooked, cubed
Pico de Gallo
- ½ pound Roma tomatoes, about 2 tomatoes, diced
- ¼ red onion, small diced
- 1 serrano pepper, small diced
Cilantro Lime Dressing
- 1 large ripe avocado, peeled with core removed
- 3 garlic cloves
- ½ bunch of cilantro, long stems removed
- 2 limes, juiced
- 2 Tbs apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup water
- Drain and rinse beans. Place beans in the pressure cooker covering them in filtered water by ½ inch, add 1 tsp of salt and kombu. Cook under high pressure for 15 minutes. Allow pressure cooker to natural release.
- Drain and rinse brown rice. Place rice in a medium saucepan covering in filtered water by ½ inch, add 1 tsp of salt and olive oil. Bring to boil, reduce heat to simmer and cover for 45-50 minutes until water is absorbed. Fluff with fork.
- Place corn cobs husks in the oven and roast for 30 minutes or until corn is soft. Once they cool down, peel down the husks and remove kernels.
- Pico de Gallo: Combine diced tomatoes, onions, serrano, 2 Tbs of lime juice, half of chopped cilantro and remaining salt. Test and adjust seasonings. Refrigerate for at least 15 minutes before serving.
- Cilantro Lime Dressing: Place avocado, garlic, cilantro, remaining 1 Tbs of lime juice and apple cider vinegar in a food processor and pulse until smooth. Slowly add in olive oil until combined and adjust thickness by adding water until desired consistency is reached. Season with salt to taste.
- Building Bowl: In a bowl, place ½ cup of rice, ½ cup of beans, ½ cup chicken, ¼ cup of pico de gallo, ¼ corn kernels.
- Serve bowl with dressing on the side.
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