Welcome to On Board in 20: a recipe series where we share wholesome, family-style meals you can prepare in about 20 minutes. The recipes always contain whole food ingredients and are intended to be brought to the table for family members to build and construct their individual plates as their senses guide them. Along the way, we bring you tips and tricks for speeding up prep and clean up for those busy weeknight meal times.
Move over sriracha, there’s a new condiment in town! It’s time to add harissa to your pantry. Harissa is a blend of roasted chili peppers, garlic, oil and spices like cumin and coriander. It’s such a fantastic way to add a rich, deep flavor to a dish in a short period of time (not unlike how jarred roasted red peppers gave our 20-minute lentil stew a boost last month). There’s no doubt this sauce is the star of this month’s 20-minute meal of rib chops with broccoli tabbouleh. I chose a mild version and added a little extra honey for my little eater at the table, but you could easily go spicier for an extra kick.
Tabbouleh is traditionally a vegetarian salad made primarily of tomatoes, finely chopped parsley, mint, onion and bulgur. In this 20-minute meal we’ve swapped out the bulgur for quinoa, which gives this meal the added bonus of being gluten free. You could easily substitute couscous for the quinoa as well for an even quicker cooking time. The broccoli is barely blanched before processing and boosts the vegetable content of the side dish. The mint is a pretty important element in this salad. Although there’s only a small amount, it makes a difference in the final product.
As with most of our 20-minute meals, the order of execution is important. My kettle boils 1.5 litres of water in about five minutes, so this always goes on first. This is enough time to get my pots on the stove and preheating, and get out most of my ingredients. You don’t need to worry too much about the ratio of quinoa to water; just be generous with the water and you can always drain out the excess.
And one final tip: set the timer once the pork chops go down because four minutes goes by fast, and it’s pretty amazing what you can accomplish while they sizzle away. This dinner finishes beautifully with a squeeze of lemon and whatever fresh greens you may have on hand.