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Versatile Quinoa

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Pronounced keen-wah, quinoa is actually a seed and not a grain but can be used in a dish as you would perhaps a grain. Think a rice or couscous salad with quinoa instead, or quinoa porridge instead of oat porridge. The beauty of quinoa is that it is gluten free and high in protein and contains many other essential nutrients, calcium, iron and B-vitamins to name a few. Because of quinoa's nutrient profile we are left feeling very satisfied and nourished after a meal containing quinoa.

This is the basic recipe to cook your quinoa, with whatever colour you have in your pantry, and to use in whichever recipe for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

Quinoa has a naturally occurring coating of a plant compound called saponin. This is bitter tasting and protects the seed from birds whilst growing. Quinoa should be rinsed before using. I have a very large tea strainer which I use for this purpose, quick and easy.

This makes 3 cups of cooked quinoa, perfect for a family salad as a side, leftovers will keep in the fridge for a couple of days and is great to have on hand to make a quick nutritious lunch for yourself with some salad leaves and an egg.

 

good pinch of sea salt
1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed

Bring 1 1/2 cups of salted water to the boil, add quinoa.Bring back to boil and then immediately reduce to lowest heat and simmer for 15 mins with the lid on.Remove from heat and allow to sit for a further 5 mins with the lid on.

Thats it! Well Done!

 

Cooked quinoa becomes translucent with a little white ring.