On our recent trip to Santa Barbara, we stopped for lunch at one of my favourite restaurants, Bliss Café in San Luis Obispo. First of all, SLO is the cutest little town ever. If it wasn’t so far away from where my husband works, we would be living there. It’s got a cute, hippy feel to it. Adorable, little shops, friendly people and it’s pretty dog friendly. All great things in my books. On top of all of that – it has an all vegan restaurant with amazing food.
Whenever I go to Bliss Café, I normally get the Buddha Bowl. This time I was quite hungry after an early morning run so I opted for their special – the hungry buddha bowl. I was not disappointed! It was a huge bowl filled with lots of grains, carbs & proteins making for a satisfied and happy me. I thought I would try recreating the bowl at home. It’s not as delicious (or pretty) as theirs, but it’s pretty darned good!
Bliss Café’s Hungry Buddha Bowl
This salad seems a little labour-intensive, but made ahead of time, makes a great to-go dish. If you happen to have leftover grains & sweet potato – this comes together in 15 minutes!
Hungry Buddha Bowl (makes 3 good-sized salads or 2 large salads)
1 large sweet potato, scrubbed
1 tsp olive oil + 1/2 tsp each of paprika, garlic powder, coarse sea salt, pepper
1 cup of quinoa
1 1/2 cup of coconut milk
1 large bunch of kale, washed well & torn into bite-sized pieces
1 tsp of coconut oil
1 cup of black beans
1/2 cup of almonds + 1/4 of water + 1/4 cup of nutritional yeast + 1 tbsp of gf tamari
Start with your potato by preheating your oven to 400 and baking it for 30 minutes. As your sweet potato bakes, cook your quinoa.
Pour your coconut milk in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Once it starts to boil, rinse & drain your quinoa well and add it to the pot. Lower the heat to medium, cover it with a lid and simmer it for 15 minutes.When your quinoa is done cooking, fluff it with a fork and set aside. While your quinoa cooks, prep your kale.
Heat a wok on the stove on medium heat and add 1 tsp of coconut oil. Sautée the kale until it just starts to soften – it will shrink considerably, which is why I advise using a large bunch. Set the kale aside in a bowl as you can reuse this wok (wiped quickly) for the baked sweet potato. Take it out of the oven and slice it into bite-sized pieces. Add a bit of olive oil to your preheated wok and add in the sweet potato and toss to coat. Add your paprika, garlic, salt & pepper and sautée at medium-high heat until it browns.
For the dressing, just combine the almonds, nutritional yeast & gluten-free tamari and slowly add the water in while blending until it reaches your desired consistency.
Layer your bowl starting with the quinoa, then the kale, followed by sweet potatoes & black beans and finished off with some of the dressing. Enjoy!
Now, if only I could figure out how to make their vegan, gluten-free doughnuts at home…