Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Quinoa with Dried Cranberries and Toasted Pecans

Quinoa (pronounced keen-wa) was introduced to me by my mother-in-law. It was one of those foods that I was interested in, but it was too unknown for me to try. Like a lot of the stuff Amy eats :) Wish I could visit Amy and have her make some kale or amaranth for me (really am going to try that sometime soon). Quinoa has a sort of nutty flavor and is really yummy. This little seed packs a mighty punch. It's high in all sorts of vitamins and minerals including, but not limited to: manganese, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, fiber, folate, etc. But the best part is that it's a complete protein, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids. I'm pretty sure you could live off nothing but this and be perfectly healthy. Unfortunately, it's not cheap like rice. If you ever see this on a really good sale, let me know! I'd love to stock up with some for food storage. This is a Williams-Sonoma recipe (some of their recipes can be complicated and seem like more work than their worth, but I sure do love them. This one is not very complicated.)

Quinoa with Dried Cranberries and Toasted Pecans

1/4 C coarsely chopped pecans (I didn't use them)
1 T extra-virgin olive oil
1 C quinoa, rinsed well in a sieve and drained well
1 garlic clove (or 2), minced
2 C water
1/2 tsp kosher salt
2 T dried cranberries, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 350. Spread pecans in a small baking pan, place in the oven and toast until they are fragrant and have taken on color, about 15 minutes. Pour onto a plate and let cool. (I left the pecans out because I'm lazy and I don't love nuts in my food because they hurt my teeth. It was still delicious).

Meanwhile, in a large, deep fry pan over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil until a quinoa seed dropped into it sizzles upon contact. Add the quinoa and cook, stirring until the seeds are seperate and golden, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute until fragrant. Add the water and salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium, cover and cook until the liquid is absorbed, 15-18 minuts. Uncover and continue to cook until any excess moisture is cooked off, about 1 minute.

Spoon the quinoa into a warmed serving dish (unless you're a normal person... (insert eye-roll)). Top with toasted pecans and cranberries, and serve. Serves 4. The first picture is from Willimas Sonoma, the second one is mine. No, I'm not a food photographer.

A variation of this is to replace the pecans with pine nuts and the cranberries with broccoli. Yum! If only I could eat broccoli (without having a major reaction to it) I would definitely try it. Someday hopefully.

1 comment:

Amy F. said...

lol Jo- I do love quinoa! I could eat it every day, (and kinda have lately).
I have never made it like that, so I'm excited to try it!!