And on the 8th Day GOD Created Quinoa!
According to the book of Genesis in the Bible, vegetation, plants, trees, etc. were created on the 3rd day. Fast forward to the 8th day (they left this part out) and that’s where you’ll find the creation of quinoa!! Ok, maybe that’s not really how it plays out in the Bible, but if it was up to me, it would! Quinoa is about as close to a miracle food as you can get.
We think of quinoa as a grain but the truth is, it’s a seed - the seed of the Chenopodium plant (who knew!)- which is from the spinach, chard and beet family. Originating in the South American Andes, parts of the plant are harvested for medicinal purposes, and the leaves are used as a vegetable, but it is mainly grown and harvested for its seeds – quinoa!
By now most of us have heard that it’s good for us, but do you know why? Quinoa is a complete protein which means it provides us with all 9 essential amino acids. (Essential amino acids are the ones that our bodies can’t manufacture, and so we have to get them from our food supply.) Aside from the essential amino acids it supplies, it’s a great source of fiber, iron, magnesium, and manganese. It’s also the perfect food for anyone following a gluten-free diet.
This recipe from “The High Protein Vegetarian Cookbook: Hearty Dishes That Even Carnivores Will Love” (Katie Parker RD and Kristen Smith PhD, RD, LD) was so incredibly simple and loaded with nutritional blessings! It’s easily batchable, simple instructions, and basic ingredients. I whipped up a batch of this yesterday for the first time, and when I tasted it my reaction was
I immediately picked up the phone and invited a friend over for lunch. Since the recipe serves 6, I had enough for dinner last night. I added some chopped chicken breast to it and served it on a bed of spinach. Nutritional homerun!
Give this recipe a try soon - your belly, friends, and family will thank you!
Make a batch and invite me over for lunch!
INGREDIENTS for 3-bean quinoa salad:
1 Cup uncooked quinoa
2 Cups low sodium vegetable broth (I used 1 cup water and 1 Cup low sodium vegetable broth to give it a lower sodium count.)
1 Cup (15 oz can) black beans, drained and rinsed
1 Cup (15 oz can) white kidney beans or another white bean, drained and rinsed
1 Cup garbanzo beans (chickpeas) drained and rinsed
2 Roma tomatoes, diced
4 Cups chopped romaine (about 6 oz.)
1/2 Cup cilantro, chopped (plus more for garnish)
INGREDIENTS for Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette (Doesn't’ that sound fancy?!?!):
1/4 Cup fresh cilantro
1/4 yellow onion, chopped
1 Roma tomato, seeded and chopped
1 TBLSP white wine vinegar
Juice of 1 lime (about 2 TBLSP)
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp fine sea salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp paprika
2 1/2 TBLSP olive oil
*combine the quinoa and vegetable broth (water) in a medium-sized pot over medium heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for another 15-20 minutes, until liquid is fully absorbed.
*Put the dressing together while the quinoa cooks. Combine all of the ingredients for Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette EXCEPT, the olive oil, in a food processor. Process until finely blended, then slowly drizzle in the olive oil with the processor running.
*Combine the cooked quinoa, drained and rinsed beans, tomatoes, romaine, and cilantro in a large bowl. Pour in the dressing and toss thoroughly.
*Serve in a bowl, topped with sliced avocado and garnished with sprigs of cilantro. This recipe serves 6.
A special thanks to Katie Parker and Kristen Smith and their wonderful book “The High-Protein Vegetarian Cookbook” for this recipe.
As always, thanks for joining me, Zoe, and the entire Elevate staff for another yummy Monday recipe!
P.S. Be sure to post pics and comments about your attempts at this recipe!!