Thursday, January 3, 2013

.:quinoa - friend or foe?:.

Brown Rice Vs. Quinoawhether you're trying to pronounce it or cook it, quinoa can be intidating, right?

if you're anything like me, you dream of being a connoisseur of quinoa because of all the awesome recipes you see on Pinterest, plus you heard somewhere that it's healthy for you, right? one issue, you just don't know how to get it from the crazy bulk grain container at the grocery store to your stove (do you put it on the stove? who knows!)

well, let me break it down for you - quinoa is great for you :: give yourself 3 tries cooking it and you will be a pro, i promise!!!

buying quinoa:. it is cheaper to buy quinoa out of the bulk section in the grocery store, but you can also buy it in a fancy plastic zip bag found in either the pasta or baking items aisle.

preparing quinoa:. since i buy quinoa out of the bulk dispenser, i soak it for about 15 minutes in lukewarm water before cooking. this can help take off the bitter coating called saponin (i am also a slight germaphobe, so it makes me feel better). don't have 15 minutes??? soak it for 5 minutes or simply give it a quick rinse through a mesh strainer (hand mesh strainer, approx $3 at Target) or just skip this all together. you will be ok, deep breath.

cooking quinoa:. i swear, the first 5 times i cooked quinoa i 'Googled' how to do it JUST to make sure i was OK. the ratio i like to use is 1 cup quinoa, 1 1/2 cups of cold water and a dash of salt - you may want to play around with this ratio depending on how 'soft' or 'firm' you decide you like your quinoa (relax, Goldilocks).

anyway, put the quinoa, water and salt in a pot, cover it and let it come to boil. turn the heat down to low-medium (there should still be a slow boil) and let it work it's magic for about 15 minutes, until the quinoa absorbed most of the water - occasionally, you can fluff with a fork.

voila! that's it - not that hard, right? like i said, you can play around with the quinoa::water ratio depending on your preference. i made quinoa for the 6th time last night and i didn't even double check Google.

is it really healthy for you?!

think of it as a superhero version of brown rice. quinoa has all the essential amino acids making it a complete protein. along with it being a complete protein, quinoa is gluten free, has more protein (8 g) and fiber (5 g) AND less carbs than brown rice - need i say more???

brown rice and quinoa can be used interchangeably - play around with it as a plain side dish, in a casserole or soup, pilaf or stir fry!

i have a few recipes that i will share shortly - enjoy!

always striving for more,
dee b.

1 comment:

  1. Yay - love this! Still haven't tried that fried rice recipe but this post helps!! I've had it sitting in my pantry for far too long - now I'm not so scared of it. Like you said, once I make it once I'm sure it will become easy peasy!