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Cooking it up with quinoa

It's been called the "wonder" food, for all its nutritious value.
Quinoa, pronounced "KEEN-wah" has 9 essential nutrients.  It's a seed and there are many ways you can use it to make your foods.  Healthy Chef Meals owner, Jennifer Gieseke shares recipes for using quinoa, starting from breakfast through dinner.

Chocolate Protein Cereal
Serves 1

1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
1 cup almond milk
1/2 cup water
Dash of sea salt
2 tsps agave or maple syrup
2 tsps cocoa powder
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 banana, 1/2 mashed, 1/2 cut into slices
1/4 cup almond milk
Fresh mint for garnish
 
Bring the quinoa, water, 1 cup almond milk and sea salt to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to a simmer until the water has fully been absorbed and the quinoa is cooked through, stirring often. Remove pot from stove, stir in cocoa powder and vanilla then transfer to a bowl. Fold in the mashed banana along with remaining 1/4 cup almond milk and agave. Garnish with banana slices and fresh mint.
 
 
Cauliflower Quinoa Cakes

Serves 8
 
1 cup quinoa, well rinsed
1 ½ cups vegetable stock
2 cups Cauliflower, chopped
½ cup daiya cheddar
½ cup vegan parmesan
1 Tbs flaxseed meal + 3 tablespoons hot water
Salt and pepper to taste
Parmesan Cheese
 
Add quinoa, and broth to a large pot.
Cover and bring the quinoa, broth and broccoli to a boil over medium heat. Add Cauliflower reduce the heat and simmer covered until the broth has been absorbed and the quinoa is tender,about 15-20 minutes.
Mix in the cheese, let it melt and season with salt and pepper. Let cool for a bit, then add your egg immediately stir as fast as you can to mix it.
If you want to stop at this point you can keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Or you can move on and finish making the cakes.
With an ice cream scoop, scoop out the Quinoa mixture and roll it in Parmesan cheese.
Heat canola oil in a skillet. Add your Quinoa balls and flatten once in the skillet. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until golden brown on the side that is down in the pan.
Now flip it over and cook for 2-3 minutes more to brown on the second side.
 
 
Colorful Quinoa Salad
Serves 2
 
1 cup red quinoa, cooked according to package instructions
2 ½ cups water
2 scallions, diced
1 small red onion, small diced
1 large red bell pepper, small diced
1 large cucumber, small diced
1 avocado, diced
1-inch chunk of fresh ginger, peeled, minced
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup of olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
 
In a large bowl, toss together the cooked quinoa with the chopped veggies.  In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon, and salt and pepper, add to veggie mixture. You can store in the refrigerator overnight or up to a few days. The longer it sits, the more flavor the quinoa absorbs from the other ingredients.
 
 
Quinoa Black Bean Burgers

Serves 5
 
¼ cup quinoa
½ cup water
15oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
½ cup ground oatmeal
¼ cup minced yellow bell pepper
2 Tbs minced onion
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 ½ tsp ground cumin
½ tsp sea salt
1 tsp hot pepper sauce
1 Tb flaxseeds, ground
3 Tbs water
3 Tbs olive oil
 
Bring the quinoa and water to a boil in a saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the quinoa is tender and the water has been absorbed, about 15 to 20 minutes.
Roughly mash the black beans with a fork leaving some whole black beans in a paste-like mixture.  Add quinoa, bread crumbs, bell pepper, onion, garlic, cumin, salt, hot pepper sauce, mix together.  Whisk flaxseed and water until thick.  Add to the black beans using your hands, mixing thoroughly.  Form the mixture into 5 patties.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet.  Cook the patties in the hot oil until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes per side.
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