Quinoa is one of my favourite superfoods. It’s slightly chewy (when you don’t overcook it) and it has a delicate nutty flavour. It is also easy to cook compared to rice and it’s also much more nutritious.
5 facts you should know about quinoa:
It’s pronounced ‘keen-wah’
It’s technically a seed not a grain
It’s high in protein and a good source of iron and fibre
It’s gluten free and has Low GI
It comes in a different varieties, there’s white, red and black quinoa. I think they all taste pretty much the same.
So how to cook quinoa? If you never made quinoa before, it can be a little daunting so here’s a simple and easy recipe to make perfectly cooked quinoa everytime.
1 cup of quinoa
2 cups of vegetable broth (use 1 ½ of liquid if you like it slightly chewier)
Note: Vegetable broth gives quinoa a nice flavour but you can also use plain water with a pinch of salt to cook and add flavour to the quinoa.
Rinse quinoa under cold water in a fine mesh strainer and gently rub the seeds together with your hands to ensure that any residual dust and saponins have been removed. Saponins are just chemicals produced by the plant to protect themselves against microbes and fungi. They are bitter-tasting so they might make your quinoa slightly bitter if not removed properly.
Add quinoa and vegetable broth into a pot.
Cook over medium heat uncovered and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to simmer. Cover with a lid and simmer for 10 – 15 minutes or until all the water has absorbed and the quinoa seeds have become translucent.
Rest for 5 minutes and fluff it up with a fork before serving.
Quinoa is so versatile. You can serve it so many different ways: You can make quinoa salad with roasted vegetables; you can add it to a soup or use it to replace rice. You can also cook quinoa with almond milk and serve it as a ‘power’ porridge with some chopped nuts and fruits. The choices are endless.
My favourite Quinoa and Tabouleh Salad. You can check out the recipe here.