I am a quinoa fiend. Because I'm semi gluten-free (more on that in a post I'm working on) and I don't eat a lot of meat, quinoa has become a huge staple in my diet, both as a grain and as a protein. I eat it constantly and I'm constantly trying to think of more ways to eat it because I'm obsessed and it's so incredibly healthy. I've shared a few quinoa recipes here on Plums in the Icebox, like Quinoa-Stuffed Zucchini and Mexican Quinoa Salad, but I wanted to push myself outside of my quinoa comfort zone, as it were.
I decided to make a HUGE batch of quinoa and challenge myself to reconfigure it into at least 2 meals a day for 3 days. Here I am looking surprised at how damn much I actually made:
I frequently make a batch of quinoa on Sunday nights and use it throughout the week but usually not THIS MUCH. I used regular white quinoa which I bought in bulk from MOM's Organic Market. This is 5.5 cups worth of dried quinoa. Crazy, right? I cooked it only in water, although I usually use broth (FYI, quinoa has a 2:1 cooking ratio: 2 cups of water to each cup of dried quinoa. Bring water and quinoa to a boil, then turn down heat to a simmer and cover until liquid is absorbed). I'm planning on using this quinoa in a few recipes that aren't exactly savory, so I thought a water preparation would be simplest.
If you need a bit more information on quinoa, I got ya. Quinoa comes from South America and was a dietary staple of the Incans. It tastes and looks like a grain, but it's actually a relative of spinach! It's also a complete protein (meaning it contains all nine amino acids) and also has a bunch of other stuff that's good for your body, like fiber and magnesium. It has a really mild flavor and can be used as a substitute for rice, couscous, and more. Lance Armstrong's website will tell you more.
The first recipe is coming up in a few minutes. I am really excited, especially because I have a couple of really unusual recipes in store! I hope you'll follow along if you're a quinoa fiend like me, or if you're just interested in learning a few different ways to prepare this (nearly) perfect food.