I have been thinking about quinoa for awhile now. I’ve made it a few time and served it as a side dish instead of rice and it was good. But it wasn’t OMGaaah good like everyone always says.
I need to come up with some really good quinoa recipes… So today, I made a TON of quinoa. It saves very well in the fridge, is easy to reheat, and can be served hot or cold, so I figured I couldn’t go wrong. This way, I thought, I will HAVE to come up with new and inventive ways to use it, instead of just thinking about it, because as we all know… I’m not going to let it go to waste.
As the guy at the grocery store told me, quinoa is an ancient grain that is wonderfully textured, delicately flavored, and highly nutritious. In addition to having a higher protein content than any other grain, quinoa also contains all 8 essential amino acids, making it a complete protein.
Seems like a great grain to add to your pantry, doesn’t it? Quinoa is more expensive that couscous or rice so it isn’t going to be something I have everyday. But now that I’m forcing myself to try new ways to serve it, I’ll be better equipped for when I do want to serve it.
To make quinoa:
Toast the grain in a dry skillet before cooking, 3-5 minutes, or until the grain becomes fragrantly nutty.
Place grains into a fine strainer and rinse thoroughly with cold water to remove any powdery residue.
To cook, use 2 c. liquid (I used chicken broth) to every 1 c. of quinoa. Combine liquid and quinoa in a medium sized saucepan, bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, cover and cook until the grains are translucent and the germ has spiraled out from each grain (how cute!), about 15 minutes. Yum!
Quinoa can be served just like this and it is still very good. But it’s not really any different from serving rice along side a meal. I want to come up with more! If you have any ideas, let me know… I’ve got a few meals worth to use!
UPDATE: Here are a few dished I made using quinoa: