For many of us who have not heard or know little about Quinoa pronounced as "Keen-wah" , this post is for you. It was only recently that I heard about this super grain and set out to find more about it. It was hard to find this in the local grocery stores. Once on a visit to my nearby Trader Joe's I found Quinoa and I'm highly impressed with the results. This is my first recipe with Quinoa and I'm sure I'm going to use it more often after reading about the tons of health benefits it provides.
Alright lets get introduced to the key player in this dish, shall we...Quinoa
Now Quinoa is most commonly considered a grain but in reality it is a seed. It is a species of goosefoot which is a grain-like crop which is grown for its edible seeds. They are no ordinary seeds as it is high in amino acids. In simpler terms high in protein and that too a complete protein, which means it has all the 9 essential amino acids. With me so far..or did I confuse you.
Alright apart from being a Protein Powerhouse, its ideal for people with celiac disease (as its gluten-free), great for vegans and people who are lactose intolerant as it provides Calcium as well.
It is a recently rediscoved ancient "grain". It was native to South America and once considered "The Gold Of The Incas" as the Incas discovered the intake of Quinoa seeds increased the stamina of their warriors.
Some of the other health benefits are:
- Lowers the Risk of Type 2 Diabetes.
- Provides cardiovascular health - for those concerned about atheroscherosis.
- Helps prevent Migraine headaches.
- Prevents heart failure.
- Provides Cardiovascular benefits for postmenopausal women.
- Protection against breast cancer.
- Prevention of gallstones.
Cooked Quinoa has a fluffy, creamy , a bit crunchy texture with a nutty flavor. It is very versatile and can be easily adapted to savoury or sweet recipes and even to salads or soups.
- 1 cup Quinoa
- 1 cup shredded green cabbage
- 1 carrot cut
- 1 orange bell pepper cut ito strips
- 1 green bell pepper cut into strips
- 2-3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 bunch green scallions chopped
- 1 tbsp Ching's soy sauce
- 1 tbsp Ching's red chilli sauce
- 1 tsp Ching's green chilli sauce
- 1 tbsp vinegar
- 1 tbsp oil
- salt to taste
- Quinoa can be cooked the same way as you would cook regular rice. The only thing to remember is to wash it thoroughly under running water in a fine sieve or a cheese cloth. Quinoa in its natural state does have a bitter coating called saponins ..some of it is removed while packaging some may not be. So always a good idea to wash it well.
- Now cook the washed Quinoa by adding 2 cups of water in a pot.Add some salt to taste.Bring it to a boil and cover and let simmer for about 15-18 minutes until the water is all absorbed and the Quinoa is cooked. Keep this aside.
3. In a skillet, heat some oil. Add the minced garlic. Saute for a minute. Add the white portions of the scallions. Add all the chopped vegetables. Mix well. Add soy sauce, red chili sauce, green chili sauce, vinegar. Mix well. Let it cook on high heat for 2-3 minutes. Adjust the salt.
3. Next add the cooked Quinoa. Mix it well. Cook for 3-4 minutes on high heat till its well incorporated with all the veggies and the sauce. Turn off the heat. Garnish with the greens of the scallions and serve.
4. This recipe serves 2-3. This is a complete meal by itself. Its healthy and packed with nutrients which makes it a guilt free indulgence. Enjoy and stay healthy.