1 dozen asparagus, trimmed and cut into small pieces
1 ½ cups uncooked quinoa, rinsed
1 tsp sweet paprika
¼ tsp black pepper
1 ½ cups water with 2 tsp vegetable bouillon powder or ( SEE NOTE 1)
½ cup water or vegetable broth
Chopped parsley for garnish
You can use 1 ½ cup vegetable broth instead of the 1 ½ cups of water and bouillon powder
The onions, garlic, peppers and tomato paste that are the base for this vegan paella can be made 2-3 days ahead and stored in the refrigerator until ready to use. Alternatively you can freeze it and use it when ready to cook the quinoa paella.
Bump up the plant-based protein by adding chickpeas or beans
Heat olive oil in an ovenproof 12 inch deep round pan. Saute onions and garlic over medium heat for 4 minutes, stirring often.
Add diced peppers and ½ tsp of the salt and continue cooking for 15 minutes, stirring often.
Add tomato paste and asparagus, mix well and cook for another 3 minutes.
Add quinoa, paprika, the remaining ½ teaspoon of salt and pepper and saute with the vegetables for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly.
Add 1 ½ cups of water and bouillon or vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer, uncovered, for 25 minutes. (If you feel the water or broth is cooking too fast and the dish may burn, just add ¼ of additional liquid at a time.)
While the quinoa cooks preheat the oven to 375F
Add ½ cup of water or vegetable broth to the pan, mix well, taste and adjust seasoning to your taste and transfer the pan to the oven.
Bake for 10 minutes. Garnish with parsley and top with cooked or raw lemon slices before serving