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March 25 2012 / Emily

Quinoa Dinner

Quinoa seems to be all the rage lately.  It is a grain with a lot of protein, and is often touted as great food for runners.  I link one mention here but I have certainly seen plenty of other references to it.  My now-empty box of Ancient Harvest brand quinoa says it has more high-quality protein than any other grain, stands alone as a “complete protein source,” is gluten free and wheat free, and most importantly for me: is quick and easy to prepare.

As I mentioned in my post regarding cous cous, I am a creature of habit when it comes to meals.  The other two times I have made cous cous, I have used a similar recipe as I will now detail below.  But there is no harm in repeating a healthy, nutritious and delicious meal!

Quinoa with spinach, tomato and feta

1 cup dry quinoa, prepared
1 teaspoon “Better Than Bouillon” chicken base
cooked spinach (I used a box of frozen leaf spinach)
grape tomatoes
crumbled feta cheese (I used reduced fat)

 

dinner ingredients

 

Cook quinoa as instructed on the box.  I like to cook grains in chicken broth so I added a scoop of Better than Bouillon as the water boiled.  After coming to a boil, it simmers for 10-15 minutes.

In that time, I cooked the frozen spinach and sliced my tomatoes.  Of course you could use fresh spinach and steam or saute it instead of frozen.  In the past I have also used canned diced tomatoes instead of the fresh grape tomatoes here – that does change the presentation and texture of the dish but is a fine substitute.

Once all the ingredients are complete, layer quinoa, spinach and tomatoes then top with crumbled feta.  It is ready to serve.  Makes 3-4 servings of quinoa depending on size, other ingredients are to taste.  You may note I added no other spices or seasonings.  I truly believe this meal was tasty on its own, but feel free to season to taste.  The quinoa took on the chicken flavor nicely from the broth.  I’ve read it has a nutty flavor but will admit to have only cooked it in broth so I can’t speak to its natural flavor.  Perhaps one day I will try without the broth.

Quinoa Dinner

 

I served mine with a salad of mixed spring greens, carrot, green pepper, tomato and pine nuts with raspberry walnut vinaigrette dressing and a glass of moscato.  I enjoy wine but am no aficionado – I doubt the sweet moscato is the right “pairing” for this meal, but I enjoy it and that is what matters.  I also had a book to keep me company, which I proceeded to finish after dinner with another glass of wine.  Quite a nice supper to round out a pleasant weekend.

 

the whole meal + reading material

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2 Comments

Leave a Comment
  1. laurenquartz / Mar 25 2012 10:02 PM

    Look at you, fancy pants! Wish I had come over there for dinner, especially since the hubby is away… Anyway, great presentation and I’m sure the Moscato was an excellent pairing (and excellent dessert!).

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