Ooooh how I love quinoa (KEEN-wah)! I’ve become pretty obsessed with it lately. Here’s why you should be too: it’s delicious! It is soooo good for you- it has a complete protein with all nine essential amino acids and many other vitamins, and weight for weight contains more protein than meat, and is wheat-free and gluten-free. Hurray for quinoa! I also just love it’s unique texture- somewhere between rice and couscous but in my opinion way way better. I’ve actually come to prefer it to rice and other grains in general (most of the time.) It ranges in color from whitish yellow to reddish brown/black, and I prefer the red variety (probably just because it’s pretty) but alas that is hard to find in bulk. There are lots of awesome ways to eat quinoa- plain as an accompaniment to beans/stir fry/etc., something i like to called mashed sweet potatoes and quinoa (just throw cubed sweet potatoes in with the quinoa, they cook at the same rate and when it’s all done mash em and voila, super easy yum yums!), veggie burgers (recipe to come soon… hopefully, i am bad at updating this…), and PILAF which finally brings us to…
THE RECIPE (of sorts, the great thing about this is that it’s really easy to make and you can use pretty much use whatever you have on hand!):
-1 cup quinoa (this is a pretty ample amount, definitely enough to serve a couple hungry people)
-EVERY/ANY veggie you have and want to use
-proteins of your choice: beans, tofu, tempeh, seitan
-veggie bouillon cube or broth packet
-dark sesame oil
-apple cider vinegar (ACV)
-assorted spices (chili powder, curry, cumin, tumeric, nutritional yeast, paprika, pepper, etc.)
-optional: fruit (mango/apple/oranges…), chipotle pepper paste (and/or hot sauce), honey/maple syrup/brown sugar, sesame seeds
1. Boil Water in a saucepan (I usually do double the amount of water for how much quinoa i’m making, so for 1 cup quinoa 2 cups water.) Add the bouillon cube and let dissolve to make broth, add quinoa. Cover and simmer on medium heat about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally until the water is absorbed and the little spiral tails have popped out of the quinoa buds, then it’s done!
2. While that’s happening you can start sauteing you veggies/proteins in a large wok/pan with a bit of oil. You know the drill with this, i should hope…
3. Once all your veggies are nicely sauteed add the spices you want to use. Mmmm.
4. Okay, your quinoa should be done by now, right? So add that goodness to the veggies and mix it all up.
5. Now it’s sauce time. You can mix all your sauce ingredients (soy, sesame oil, ACV, lemon, hot sauce, honey/maple syrup) together beforehand to make sure you get a sauce mixture perfect to your liking, or you can just ad a couple tablespoons of each to the pan, mix it in an adjust accordingly. Just note that if you’re not used to cooking with sesame oil it is pretty strong so a couple tablespoons sbould be plenty. Lastly I would throw those fruits/ sesame seeds in if you got em and there you go!