Food

Health benefits of… Quinoa

Quinoa Pilaf with pine nuts

A complete protein that can be a substitute for wheat or rice

Pronounced ‘keen-way’; it is a great wheat-free alternative to any starchy grain, and it comes in two variations red and creamy white. Both types are lightly bitter when cooked and open up to release little white curls (like a tail) as they soften.

Harvested in South America for thousands of years, quinoa was a staple diet of the Incas and their descendants.

In 2013 the UN recognized the crop for its high nutrient gratified, with double the protein appeared of rice or barley, quinoa is also an excellent origin of calcium, manganese, and magnesium.

It also controls good levels of several B vitamins, vitamin E, and dietary fiber. It has a delicate and subtle nutty flavor, versatile for breakfast (as corn), lunch as salad or dinner as a side.

Quinoa is between the least allergenic of all the seeds, making it a fabulous wheat-free favorite. Like buckwheat, quinoa has a unique amino acid profile, as it contains all nine essential amino acids making it a complete protein origin.

Quinoa is, hence, an excellent choice for vegans who may struggle to get enough protein in their diets.

 

Quinoa rice pilau with dill & roasted tomatoes

Ingredients

250g tomatoes cut into cubes

4 tbsp olive oil

1 onion, thinly sliced

3 sticks celery, sliced

½ tsp cumin seeds

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

100g basmati rice (brown or white)

140g quinoa

2 x 20g packs dill, chopped

500ml chicken or vegetable stock (from a cube is fine)

50g pine nuts, toasted

 

Method

Quinoa rice pilau with dill & roasted tomatoes

Ingredients

250gm tomatoes cut into cubes

4 tbsp olive oil

One onion, thinly sliced

Three sticks celery, sliced

½ tsp cumin seeds

Two garlic cloves, finely chopped

100gm rice

140gm quinoa

2 x 20g packs dill, minced

500ml chicken or vegetable stock

50gm pine nuts toasted

Method

Step one:

Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Place the tomatoes on a baking sheet and sprinkle with 2 tbsp olive oil and some seasoning. Roast for 15mins, remove and set aside.

Step two:

Heat the remaining olive oil in a large pan. Add the onion, celery, cumin and garlic, season to taste. Fry on a medium heat for 10mins until golden. Add the rice, quinoa, dill and stock. Cover with a lid and cook for 12-15mins or till the rice is soft. Add tomatoes and pine nuts, and lightly stir.

Serve with fish or a green salad.

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