January 17, 2010

Basic Quinoa Recipe

As you might have noticed from some of my previous posts, I usually spend a portion of my Sundays food shopping and getting ready for the week ahead. And although that usually includes preparing a soup of the week, I'm just not that in the mood for soup this week.

Instead, I've decided to focus this week's recipes around quinoa. Quinoa is a fluffy, nutty, gluten free super grain and can vary in color from light tan to deep red. It's a good source of magnesium, Vitamin B2, and contains all nine essential amino acids which means it is a complete protein. Basically, it can kick lots of other grains' butts and is a fantastic source of protein for vegans, vegetarians, and all you folks who are looking to reduce your meat consumption!
For more information on quinoa, check out this site.

Cooking quinoa is similar to cooking rice except it's a lot quicker. I like to make a large batch and then keep it in my refrigerator to use in various dishes during the week. It works perfectly for breakfast, as a pilaf, in salads, in stuffing or even in some desserts!

Basic Quinoa
1 part quinoa
2 parts water
(example 1 cup quinoa, 2 cups water or 2 cups quinoa, 4 cups water, etc...)

The first step in cooking quinoa is to rinse it well to remove the saponin. Saponin is a substance that covers the quinoa and has a bitter taste. To wash off the saponin residue, rinse the quinoa thoroughly with cold water & drain well before cooking.
Next, combine your quinoa & water in a saucepan. Note that the quinoa will swell up to 3 times the pre-cooked size so depending on how much you are making, you may want to use a large pot.
Bring the quinoa & water to a boil. Once it is boiling, lower the heat to a simmer & cover the pot. Simmer for 10-15 minutes until all the water is absorbed. I usually like to check at 10 minutes to determine if more time is needed. Once the water is absorbed, remove from the heat, fluff with a fork & enjoy!

Stay tuned for some quinoa recipes that I'll be enjoying this week including Stuffed Acorn Squash with Quinoa, Chickpeas & Raisins, Greek Quinoa Salad & Breakfast Quinoa....

1 comment :

  1. I love quinoa! I have one recipe that I make over and over and over and over. Can't wait to see some new ones.