Tri-Pepper Coconut Rice with Grilled Curry Summer Squash

I love meat. But every now and then, even I get to a point where my body craves a break. So in order for me to live a full life eating anything that I want, I make sure there is a balance to what I cook each week. And going vegetarian for at least one day is my way of doing it.

This Tri-Pepper Coconut Rice with Grilled Curry Summer Squash is a dish that I loved putting together. It is colorful, flavorful and despite being meatless, extremely hearty and filling. With one simple omission, this recipe can be a go-to meal for vegetarians and vegans alike, or a side dish to complement a piece of lean protein on a non-meatless day. Make just the rice or just the summer squash if you’d like to showcase them separately. The possibilities for this dish are endless!

 

Tri-Pepper Coconut Rice with Grilled Curry Summer Squash

(recipe serving size – 3-4)

For the rice:

1 cup water

3/4 cup unsweetened coconut milk

1 cup rice

1/2 medium green bell pepper, sliced into 1-inch pieces

1/2 medium red bell pepper, sliced into 1-inch pieces

1/2 medium yellow bell pepper, sliced into 1-inch pieces

1 tb butter (omit if vegan)

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp cracked black pepper

6 basil leaves, torn by hand plus additional leaves for garnish

In a pot, bring the plain water and coconut milk to a boil. Add the rice, basil, butter, salt and pepper. Stir once to incorporate the ingredients. Reduce the heat to low and simmer with the lid on for 10 minutes.

Add the green, red and yellow peppers but do not stir them in yet. Place the lid back on the pot and leave on low for another 10 minutes or until the rice is tender. Mix the rice and the peppers together using a fork and keep warm.

For the squash:

1 summer squash, sliced into 1/2-inch rounds (roughly 12 oz)

2 tb olive oil

1/2 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp curry powder plus additional for garnish

1/2 tsp cracked green peppercorns

1/4 tsp oregano

Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Mix the oil and spices in a small bowl. Brush one side of the summer squash rounds with the mixture and place seasoned-side down on the grill pan. Grill for 2-3 minutes. During that time, brush the side facing up with the rest of the mixture. Turn the squash rounds over and grill for another 2-3 minutes.

Bringing it all together:

Spoon the warm rice into a large serving bowl. Place the summer squash on top of the rice and garnish with the additional basil leaves. Dust with the additional curry powder and serve while warm.

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