Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Quinoa with Roasted Vegetables

Adapted from: Spa Cuisine at Home, Chef Nadine

If you haven't ever heard of quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wa), go out and buy some now. It's awesome. Quinoa is so healthy, full of fiber and protein, and is not like any other grain. It's not quite cous-cous, not quite rice... it's better. It lends itself well to being the base for many recipes, and is very filling but still very healthy. Most grocery stores today should have it, but Whole Foods and Trader Joe's are a sure bet. I was first introduced to this wonder-grain in a cooking class I took through the Boston Center for Adult Education, called "Spa Cuisine at Home." Not sure if they still offer this class, but it was wonderful and I got so many great recipes and techniques. I've edited the original recipe a bit over time, but no matter how you vary your quinoa dish it's easy to work with.

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 and 1/4 cups of vegetable stock
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (Optional; can use vegan Parm. for vegan, although I haven't tried)
  • 1-2 cups of broccoli
  • 1-2 cups of cauliflower (or full head of cauliflower)
  • 1/2 cup of yellow onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil, plus extra for greasing
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Heat the oven to 450 degrees. Chop broccoli and cauliflower into small pieces and spread over a cookie sheet greased with olive oil. To avoid florets getting over crisped, you can loosely cover the pan with tin foil for the first 15-20min of cooking. Set timer to 45 minutes to roast the veggies.
  2. Chop the onion and garlic. Heat olive oil in a pot and add the onion, saute for about 1-2 minutes and then add the garlic and cook for about 1 more minute.
  3. Add the quinoa, water, and vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 14 minutes- you will see a white line in the quinoa grains - until the liquid is gone.
  4. Add the Parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper, mixing, and then add the roasted veggies. Serve hot.
Notes: There are TONS of variations of this dish! Sometimes I add fresh chopped spinach to it too. The original recipe calls for arugula, shitake mushrooms, and carrots instead of broccoli & cauliflower (also good, but I love the flavor the roasted broccoli and cauliflower gives to the quinoa). Another good variation is to serve cold and add peas, olives, chopped fresh asparagus, and some dill & parsley for a summer version (leave out the Parm cheese though).

Also note that you can use 2 and 1/4 cups of vegetable stock (as opposed to part water); I just prefer to water down the stock as they are often chock full of sodium. Also, note that it's a good idea to rinse the quinoa before use.

*See my post of other grains for more healthy dishes like this!

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