Tag Archives: Quinoa

Quinoa Fruit Salad

Doesn’t the weekend just go way, way too fast?  I’m so bummed that it’s already Sunday night, even though we had a fun-packed weekend and Fritz is outside grilling chicken so I can have a beautiful salad tomorrow like the world’s best husband that he is.

Still.  I wish it was Friday morning again.  But since it’s not, here’s an awesome fruit salad recipe that I promise you will love.  You’ll think it’s gorgeous, you’ll want to kiss it, you’ll want to hug it, you’ll want to love it…(Miss Congeniality, anyone?)

Quinoa Fruit Salad (original recipe from Oh She Glows, serves 4-6) 

Printable Recipe Card

  • 3/4 C dry quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 apple, rinsed and diced
  • 3 peaches, rinsed and diced
  • 1 pint strawberries, rinsed and sliced
  • 2 T maple syrup
  • 1 t balsamic vinegar
  • 1 T lime juice
  • sprinkle of salt

Cook the quinoa according to package directions, remembering to rinse it first to get rid of that bitter taste.  Meanwhile, slice the fruit (and feel free to adapt the fruit in any way–use whatever you have around the house!) and layer it in a deep bowl.  When the quinoa is cooked and fluffed (it doesn’t need to be cooled), toss that on top, too.

Toss the dressing ingredients over the top and mix, mix, mix.  I found this to be the perfect amount of sweetness (and just a teensy hint of balsamic), but you can always adjust to your own taste.  The lime also keeps the apple from browning, which is nice.

Either serve warm as is (because you probably wont be able to resist it), or cool in the fridge prior to serving.

Angela also added almonds to her salad, which I can imagine would be amazing if you plan on eating it all in one day.  I know we’ll have some leftover for school tomorrow, so I left out what I knew would end up as soggy nuts.  Which is never a good thing to have.

Ahem.  Anyway.  I love, love, love this salad.  Sometimes I forget that quinoa is so yummy in a sweet dish, so I’m glad I had a reminder.

I also got to chat with some lovely people at the farmstand by my house when I went to pick up some strawberries.  I’ll tell you all about that (and the recipe I left with!) on another day.

Because I want to start the week off on the right foot, I’ll leave you with a picture that my mom posted on facebook today.  It’s a throwback to the old days, when my little sister Kristen (who is applying to vet schools as we speak) first discovered her true love for animals:

It makes me laugh every time I look at it.  For, like, ten minutes.

No frogs were harmed (other than possible psychological damage) in the making of this photo.

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Mexican Quinoa Casserole

Day number two of midterms week, down.  Yes!

On a more sad note, Fritz went off to California today for a dental conference that he’s presenting research in.  Sad for me, happy for him.  It’s going to be very lonely for the next couple of days, so it’s probably a good thing I have a large stack of textbooks to bury my sorrows in.

Actually, that’s never really a good thing, is it?

My mom (who is apparently the recent MVP of this blog) gave me a recipe for this sweet-potato-black-bean-quinoa-casserole this weekend, and I decided to give it a try because it was filled with a lot of healthy ingredients that I had on hand.  My one complaint was that it was a bit dry, so I’d probably add a 1/2 cup of water or so next time I made it (or an extra cup of salsa–even better!).  It was good as a side dish, and even better as a Mexican-style filling for the omelet I just made for dinner! 

Mexican Quinoa Casserole

  • 1 C dry quinoa
  • 3 C black beans (2 cans, or 1 1/3 C dried beans, soaked, rinsed, and cooked)
  • 1 sweet potato, grated (about 2 C)
  • 1 1/2 C salsa
  • 3/4 grated cheddar cheese
  • 1 T cumin
  • 2 eggs or 1 egg/1 flax egg (1 T ground flaxseed in 3 T water)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Cook the quinoa according to instructions (I used 2 1/2 C water and simmered until all the water was absorbed–I had both red and white quinoa, and red cooks more slowly than white).

In a casserole dish, combine the quinoa, grated sweet potato, and black beans.

Mix together the remaining ingredients in a bowl, using only half of the grated cheese (eggs/flax egg, cheese, salsa).

Pour over the quinoa mixture, and combine thoroughly.  Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top.

Bake, covered, on the middle rack in the oven for 25 minutes.  Uncover for another five minutes and let the cheese on the top brown (you can broil it if you like your cheese crispy).

Slice and serve!

Since mine came out a bit crumbly, I was using it as a filling for other meals, which was perfect.  A great way to eat this would be in a halved bell pepper with some extra salsa–mm! 

Between all the studying that Fritz and I have been doing, it hasn’t been very fun around here.  Luckily, Henry always manages to find some way to amuse himself–he was surfing on pieces of paper in the kitchen, jumping from one to another and sliding all over the floor.  Who knew cats were so hysterical?

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Filed under Entrees, Vegetarian

Chicken, Quinoa, and Summer Squash Casserole

Every once in a while, something incredibly obnoxious happens.

And it’s not that my heat breaks.  ‘Cause that happens too, and I wake up and it’s freezing cold in the house and the temperature keeps dropping, until I am forced to lay next to the space heater wrapped in a blanket crying little frozen tears (or something like that).

But that’s not what I’m talking about.  The other obnoxious thing is when I decide to make a quick dinner and don’t bother to take pictures because I don’t think it’s worth it.  And then it turns out beautiful, delicious, and nutritious.  Luckily I managed to snag a picture of this casserole before Fritz dove in–so that’s something.

Chicken, Quinoa, and Summer Squash Casserole  (inspired by Cooking Light)

  • 1 large chicken breast
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1-2 summer squash (you can also use zucchini–I had some leftover from the other day)
  • 1 C uncooked quinoa, rinsed
  • 2 C chicken broth
  • 1 T rosemary, ground
  • 2 T whole-wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 C skim milk
  • 1/4 C cheddar cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste

Since there’s no pictures, I’ll make this a quick summary. 

Pre-heat the oven to 350.  Rinse the quinoa until the water runs clear, and then cook in two cups chicken broth (you can use bouillon).  Set aside (it’s okay if there is extra broth after they uncurl).

On medium-high heat, saute the onions in the olive oil until they are starting to brown.  Cut the chicken into bite-size pieces and cook thoroughly.  Next, add the summer squash (cut lengthwise and then sliced into thin half-moons) and rosemary, and cook until soft. Transfer to a casserole dish, and add the quinoa and salt and pepper to taste.  Spread evenly in the pan.

Put the flour in a saucepan over medium heat.  Slowly add the milk, stirring to prevent any lumps.  Stir in the cheese and heat until the sauce starts to thicken.  Pour over the casserole and bake for about 20 minutes until the edges and top are browned (I switched to a broil for the last few minutes because I love browned cheese).

So there you have it!  It sounds kind of complex, but Fritz and I were starving after class and it only took about 45 minutes to get it on the table–and it was so filling.  Plus, it is so full of good stuff!

Here’s another recipe that occurred under the same circumstances:

Turkey Chili in a Bell Pepper Bowl

This one’s pretty easy–I think you’ll be able to figure it out on your own.

Enjoy!

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Mexican Quinoa Skillet

This is a pretty exciting recipe.

Not because it is gourmet, or terribly difficult, or requires any skilled technique whatsoever.  Actually, for all the opposite reasons: it’s cheap, healthy, super easy, uses only one pot, and most importantly–it’s delicious and very filling.  I mean–what else can a woman ask for?

Oh, yes–leftovers.  This recipe makes about 6 servings, which means when I was busy studying for finals, Fritz could toss a big spoonful of this into a Tupperware, bring along a whole-wheat roll-up, and make himself a hearty Mexican-style wrap for lunch at school.

So basically, this is a recipe for perfection.

Enjoy!

Mexican Quinoa Skillet (adapted from this recipe)

  • 3/4 to 1 lb ground turkey
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 14-oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 T chili powder
  • 1 t ground cumin
  • 1 C red quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 1/2 C water

Saute the onions and peppers in a large pot/skillet over medium high heat in 1 T olive oil, or until browned.  Add the ground turkey and brown until thoroughly cooked, drain the excess fat, then toss in the spices and stir for two minutes more.

Next, add the tomatoes, quinoa, and water, and simmer on low uncovered for 20-30 minutes, until quinoa is cooked and unfurls.  If the water evaporates too quickly, cover and add a bit more water as needed.

Once it’s ready, serve hot in a giant bowl and enjoy yourself some quick-n-easy comfort food.  You can copy Fritz and eat it in a wrap, topped with some salsa and grated  cheese.  He’ll be flattered.

With all the shopping and wrapping I have to do, it’s nice to have a dinner that doesn’t take long.  What’s your go-to speedy meal for a crazy night?

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Three-Pepper Dry Rub

When I have a busy week at school, and I feel like Fritz is fading away because he hasn’t had enough “man food” for the last few days, my favorite thing to do is take a giant steak out of the freezer (thanks, Dad!…again) and make a dry rub.  This is amazing for multiple reasons: 1) The steak lasts for three days of Fritz-happy leftovers; 2) Fritz grills it, so there’s less work for me; and 3) A dry rub takes me about three minutes to put together but it makes the steak taste gourmet.  Basically this is just a win-win situation all around.

One of my favorite dry rubs is a cocoa-cumin mix (if you want to try it, it consists of cocoa powder, cumin, salt and black pepper in whatever ratio you like best), but I wanted to try something different so this time I went with a three-pepper dry rub.

Three-Pepper Dry Rub (from The America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook)

 

  • 1 T black pepper
  • 1 T white pepper
  • 1 1/2 t coriander
  • 1 1/2 t cumin
  • 1/2 t red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 t cinnamon

 

Combine the spices into a tupperware (this is enough for two steaks, so save some for next time!).  Dry the steak with a paper towel, and rub the spices into the meat with your fingers.  Grill it the way you like it!

 

Another thing that I love lately is New Hope Mills (go here for their website).  If you live in the Syracuse area, you need to head over to Auburn now and buy everything in the store.  Sadly, I have yet to find an equivalent place in Long Island.  I went to Whole Foods yesterday to get some baking goods and they had one shelf of overpriced flours and other baking goodies.  A sad situation.  If anyone knows of a place like that near me, pleeeease let me know.

Last time I was in Syracuse visiting the family, mom took me on a New Hope Mills shopping spree and we decided to try something new: Quinoa.

 

Quinoa is cooked like rice (I use 1 C broth and 1 C water to every 1 C quinoa), and can be seasoned any way you can imagine.  However, it has a really cool texture when cooked, and contains a higher protein content and a full set of essential amino acids.  It is gluten-free, high in iron, magnesium, and a good source of fiber.   You should really just try it.

A quick recipe idea for you to try: brown a minced onion in a T of olive oil, and add 1 C quinoa, 1 T curry powder, and salt and pepper to taste.  Cook until fragrant, then add 1 C chicken broth and 1 C water.  Cover and simmer until tender (the quinoa “uncurls” when it is fully cooked).  Add 1/2 C raisins and serve up!

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Filed under Entrees, Side Dishes