Saturday, January 28, 2012

quinoa :: again I just might be a bit quinoa crazed of late. No! Whatever would make you say such a thing? You ask. Uh...I don't know...could it be that when I tell my boys I'm trying a new recipe, their first question is...does it have quinoa in it? Quinoa...a word that just a short week ago, they had never heard now part of their everyday vocabulary. Score one for mom!

Not to kick 'em when their down...but...I decided to give Quinoa Veggie Surprise, I go again...whole food mommies...ugh...a try. Simple ingredients that the writer claimed had her daughter saying, "This is the best healthy dinner we've had!" And in that...was the surprise. Well, with a recommendation like that...I had to give it a go.

Well...surprise! It sucked. Okay...let me back up here. It was edible...but once again, it lacked one important ingredient...flavor.

I realize that part of this new lifestyle is going to involve appreciating the true flavor of the foods you are eating. Allowing your taste buds to experience...let's say, broccoli...rather than butter drippin'...cheesy loaded broccoli. So...I didn't turn my back on the batch. I packaged it up and put it in the frig.

Turns out...Quinoa Veggie Surprise is a dish best served cold. Especially after kicking it in the butt with my secret arsenal. At lunch, the next day, I gave it a sniff and thought...I know! I will hit it with my sister Sue's Balsamic Vinaigrette. Toss on some cashews for a word...AMAZING.

Sue's Vinaigrette? For a small batch, I mixed 1T Balsamic vinegar...2 T Olive Oil...a dash of Sea Salt...A fresh grinding of good Pepper...1 teaspoon of sugar. Shake or stir good. I drizzled two teaspoons over my Veggie Quinoa and it enhanced...not overwhelmed...the flavor of the carrots and broccoli.

It was so good...that I packaged up the remaining portion the sweet wife I am...sent it off with hubby for lunch. I couldn't let quinoa get a bad rep in this house. I need all of their support if I am to make a go of this new lifestyle. I am happy to report, I received a call at lunch thanking me for the great tasting quinoa. He went on and on about how much better it tasted...about those yummy cashews.

Yes...what a good wife I am. Okay...if you're still with me...I confess...I saw a fellow blogger post about this wonderfully healthy lunch she packed her man and I thought...oh, how sweet. I can do sweet...right? It's been a while...but if I try really hard, I bet it will come back to me. So thank that moves...for the inspiration. And that's (unknowingly) from my husband as well!

So good...I'm giving you another angle...perhaps to inspire you. Oh, almost forgot the Veggie Quinoa with a real...honest to goodness...Surprise!

2 cups water...2 Chicken Bouillon Cubes...1 cup Quinoa...boil...reduce heat, cover until done...about 15 minutes. Steam Broccoli (I was pretty generous with amount) approx. 2 cups with 3 sliced Carrots...steamed right along with the broccoli...1 can of Black Beans, rinsed and drained. Serve cold with Susie's Balsamic Vinegrette and Cashews.

Good stuff. Don't forget...pack 'em a healthy lunch! Happy weekend.


  1. Jenny- I love this food, too but I use vegetable broth in place of the water. I think this adds a little flavor. Finished product also takes good with a light sprinkle of low sodium soy sauce. Love- Tina

  2. I love quinoa! I typically will make it with black bean salad, and it is to die for! The first couple times I cooked with it, I didn't realize you were supposed to rinse in first, and my husband was not impressed with the bitterness. Now it is our go to food. Better than rice :-) Looking forward to the Whole Food Kitchen workshop!!