10 Things You Want to Know About Quinoa (and a Breakfast Recipe!)
Or, as an homage to Woody Allen, “Everything you ever wanted to know about quinoa but were afraid to ask…”.
Make sure to read through to the end for a great, super simple breakfast recipe using quinoa.
- It’s pronounced ‘keen-wah’, not ‘kwin-oh-wah’ (you’re welcome!)
- It’s delicious. Slightly nutty and grainy, it seems to be appealing even to the finicky-est of eaters.
- While it looks and tastes like a grain, it’s actually a relative of spinach, and the part we eat is the seed.
- It’s high in protein. And it’s high in iron and fibre. So it’s good for you.
- It’s gluten free. So whether you’re intolerant or just want a gluten-free day now and then, it’s a great substitute for rice, pasta, couscous or other carbs.
- Like many things in life, in comes in a variety of colours. The most common is white, but there are also red and black. You can even buy them all together in one package for a pretty-coloured dish.
- It comes in different forms. Just like corn and wheat, it can be puffed or rolled into flakes or ground into flour…or you can buy it whole.
- It needs to be washed before you cook it. The surface is coated with a chemical that has a soapy, bitter taste, so make sure you either rinse it or buy quinoa that has already been rinsed (but you might want to rinse it again, just to make sure).
- It has an interesting texture. Something a little like barley with its chewiness, it also has a light fluffiness similar to couscous.
- Quinoa is a complete protein; it contains all nine of the essential amino acids, which cannot be made by the body and therefore must come from food.
Simple Quinoa Recipe – A Warm Breakfast Cereal
- ½ cup uncooked (rinsed) quinoa
- 1 ¼ cup almond milk or coconut milk
- 1 teaspoon organic vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon organic ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon honey or raw organic agave syrup
- 1 handful of diced fresh or dry fruit and/or nuts
- Combine quinoa, milk, vanilla and cinnamon in a medium saucepan on the stove and, stirring frequently, bring to the boil.
- Turn down to low-medium heat, and simmer for 20-25 minutes until the quinoa has absorbed most of the liquid and it is nice and tender.
- Remove from heat, serve in a bowl and top with your favorite healthy fruits, nuts, seeds or anything!
If you have leftover, unseasoned, cooked quinoa, use 1 cup of it with enough milk to moisten and throw it in the microwave for a quick instant breakfast.
What’s your favourite way to use quinoa?