8 Reasons Why I Love Quinoa!
Quinoa is a Super Seed
Quinoa is one of our family’s favorite and easy side dishes!! Stuart and I can easily make this our main meal! Consider quinoa for lunch, dinner and even breakfast. Read up on this supercharged power food and experiment with preparing this for you and your family![sc:green text=”Fun facts about quinoa:” ]
1) The word “quinoa” is pronounced “KEEN-wah.
2) Quinoa is not a cereal grass or grain like rye or wheat but rather a member of the same food family that contains spinach, Swiss chard, and beets.
3) Quinoa is a perfect food to include on a gluten-free diet, since it not only lacks gluten but doesn’t even belong to the same plant family as wheat, oats, barley, or rye.
4) Quinoa dates back to approximately 3000 BC, originating in the Andes mountains regions of South America.
5) Cooked quinoa seeds are fluffy and creamy, yet also slightly crunchy. The flavor of the cooked seeds is delicate and somewhat nutty.
1) Quinoa is chock full of iron, fiber, magnesium, calcium, potassium, manganese, phosphorus, folate and zinc!
2) Quinoa has a significant amount of both lysine and isoleucine (especially lysine), and this allows the protein in quinoa to serve as a complete protein source. Can’t beat quinoa nutrition!
3) About 28% of quinoa’s fatty acids come in the form of oleic acid, the heart-healthy monounsaturated fat, and about 5% come in the form of alpha-linolenic acid or ALA—the omega-3 fatty acid associated with decreased risk of inflammation-related disease.
4) The antioxidant flavonoids quercetin and kaempferol are plentiful in quinoa.
5) Various members of the vitamin E family like alpha-, beta-, gamma- and delta-tocopherol are found in this super seed. (Antioxidants act as free radical scavengers. They help prevent their destruction to other cells, converting them to harmless waste products that get eliminated from your body before they can do damage).
You can purchase quinoa in prepackaged containers or in the bulk bins. The most common type of quinoa you will find in the store has an off-white color but you can also find red and black quinoa. Store quinoa in an airtight container, like an easy to find mason jar! It will keep for a longer period of time, approximately three to six months, if stored in the refrigerator.[sc:green text=”Preparing Quinoa:” ]
To remove the saponins (on the outside of the quinoa), which can cause the quinoa to have a bitter taste, place the quinoa seeds in a fine-meshed strainer and run cold water over the quinoa while gently rubbing the seeds together in your hands.
To cook the quinoa, add one part of the grain to two parts liquid in a saucepan. After the mixture is brought to a boil, reduce the heat to simmer and cover. It usually cooks up in about 15 minutes! Cooked quinoa becomes translucent and appears to have a white-spiraled tail.[sc:green text=”Easy quinoa recipes tips:” ]
Cook in a vegetable broth to up the nutritional content and flavor!
Like it sweet? Add chopped dates, cranberries, or raisins.
Like some crunch? Add pine nuts or chopped almonds.
Season to taste with salt, pepper, turmeric, garlic or even caramelized onion!
Sauté with broccoli, cauliflower, mushrooms, chopped asparagus, or spinach.
[sc:glory-g text=”Quinoa is always in our pantry. Try it and have fun!
Please share your favorite Quinoa recipes with us!” ] – Kimberly Joi Cohen