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Healthy Recipe: Quinoa makes a low fuss, high protein meal

by Nancy Maneely

Healthy Recipe: Quinoa Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) contains more high-quality protein than any other grain. In fact, the National Academy of Sciences calls it “one of the best sources of protein in the vegetable kingdom.” This recipe is great as a stand-alone vegetarian entrée. If you like, add a little cooked chicken, fish or tofu. As leftovers, serve hot or cold — it makes a nutritious quick breakfast!

Quick Quinoa & Veggies

Makes 4 servings

1 cup quinoa, rinsed well and drained
2 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable stock
4 cups vegetables
2 tbsp olive oil
Salt, pepper & favorite seasonings
Parmesan cheese
Pine nuts

  1. Place 1 cup quinoa and 2 cups stock in saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer, cover and cook until all water is absorbed (10-15 minutes).
  2. Steam your favorite vegetables until they are crisp-tender. Use whatever you have on hand. My favorites are broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, onions and/or squash.
  3. Toss vegetables lightly with the olive oil, salt & pepper and/or your favorite seasonings to taste.
  4. Combine vegetables with cooked quinoa, mix gently.
  5. Top with freshly grated parmesan cheese and toasted pine nuts.

We usually refer to quinoa as a grain because it has the properties of a grain, but technically it's the seed of a leafy plant related to spinach. Quinoa is a great food for people who must follow wheat-free/gluten-free diets because Quinoa doesn't contain gluten. It can be substituted for almost any other grain in recipes.

Quinoa seed are covered with bitter tasting saponins that naturally repel insects and birds. For this reason, many people like to soak the quinoa for a few hours before cooking. However, if you buy a quality brand, this is not necessary. Look for “no pre-soaking needed” on the label.

What is your favorite quinoa recipe?

 

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