Quinoa and Bean Pilaf

Apr 13, 2013 by

It has been a while since I’ve had some quinoa. Thankfully, the lifestyle challenge that I am participating in with some friends encouraged me to find recipes using my favourite grain. My friends couldn’t have asked me to join at a better time. I  needed to shake things up a bit, specifically with regards to my eating habits.

I have worked so hard to eat well and to set an example for my children. My health has been okay over the past few years (only a few chronic pain episodes) but my husband and children have taken priority. I take care of them in every way. But if it is one thing I have to remember – if Mommy isn’t well, everyone suffers. Now that wasn’t meant to be a harsh statement in any way. Those who know me will understand me clearly. My priority should be to take care of me, so that I can take care of the ones I love. It sounds simple as I type, but when day-to-day routine comes around, I really don’t have time to figure things out. It’s really just go, go, go!

And that’s why it is important to get rid of old habits and create new ones that will stick. I was reminded over the past few weeks that preparation is the key to success. Last week’s challenge was to commit to eating whole grains and legumes,  and not to consume meat. Eating well has never been a problem for me. It has been preparation that seems to get me. New routines have caused me to find whatever I can prepare quickly, and clearly that isn’t always best. I’m working on improving that. I enjoy planning and being prepared, so this challenge has really allowed me to dust off that skill of mine. Of the few things I made, I really wanted to share this Quinoa dish. I adapted this Bean and Pilaf recipe from The Food Network, and as always I used what I had available to me when it came to the ingredients.

 Quinoa and Bean Pilaf_1

 

Since the start of the challenge, I have made a few things that I really enjoyed and wanted to share some of them here. I shared the photos on my Facebook page and will continue to do so occasionally during the challenge. I will post the really good ones.

Quick Meals LC2013

  

Quinoa and Bean Pilaf

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Yield: 4-6

Ingredients

  • Grapeseed oil for sauteeing
  • 1 Scallion, thinly sliced
  • 1 Celery stalk, thinly sliced
  • 2 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp Tomato Paste
  • 1 Cup Quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • 2 Cups Chicken or Vegetable Broth
  • 1 Carrot, washed, scraped and sliced
  • 1/2 Cup Sweet Corn
  • 1/2 Cup Edamame
  • 1 19oz can Dark Kidney Beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 Cups Baby Spinach
  • Shredded Cheddar Cheese for serving
  • Salt and pepper

Instructions

  1. In a medium pot, sautee scallions and celery over medium heat for about 5 minutes.
  2. Add garlic and a pinch of salt and pepper
  3. Stir in the tomato paste
  4. Add the quinoa and then the broth. Gently stir to combine
  5. Add the carrots and beans, then cover and bring to a simmer
  6. Check every 5 minutes until the broth is fully absorbed
  7. Add the sweet corn and edamame. Stir to combine
  8. When the liquid is fully absorbed, remove pot from heat and stir in spinach
  9. Transfer to plates and top with shredded cheese
  10. Serve and enjoy hot
http://lovelypantry.com/2013/04/quinoa-and-bean-pilaf/

 

Red Kidney Beans have been a part of my diet for the better part of my adult life. I usually use it one dish – my Rice and Peas. I’m loving the versatility of beans. An awesome way to get fiber and protein.

 Dark Red Kidney Beans

 

As always, when cooking with delicate greens like spinach, you add at the very end once the pot has been removed from the heat source.

 

Quinoa and Bean Pilaf_3

 

This one pot dish could easily be a mid-week supper. It is easy to make, filling and wonderfully good for you.

 Quinoa and Bean Pilaf_2

 

If you are looking for a quick and healthy meal, try this one. It is easy to customize based off what you have available in your fridge or pantry.

 

 

Quinoa and Bean Pilaf_4

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Parmesan Quinoa & Pine Nut Muffins for #MuffinMonday

Nov 12, 2012 by

Welcome to another edition of #MuffinMonday! Today we are sharing a cheesy savoury muffin to get your week started in the best way possible.  No cranberries and mixed fruit in my muffins just yet. Sit tight. :-)

I’m not sure how I let it happen, but Christmas seemed close but not that close. I mean Halloween was just here…and now stores are playing Christmas music. I guess retailers have to keep up. I don’t. By now, your mood should be changing as you get into the seasonal spirit of tinsel and ornaments. I dread putting up the tree just as how I dread taking it down. But I have kids and therefore it must be done. Kids really do make you become awesome parents.

My selection for today’s #MuffinMonday is Parmesan, Quinoa and Pine Nut Muffins. I added some Quinoa Flour in the batter to increase the nutritional value of my muffins. I loved the cheesy aroma from these muffins as they baked. I also loved the toasted pine nuts scattered over top of each muffin.

 

Parmesan Quinoa & Pine Nut Muffins

 

 

Parmesan Quinoa & Pine Nut Muffins for #MuffinMonday

Recipe Type: Muffin
Author: Lyn adapted from 100 Muffins from 1 Easy Recipe
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
A savory, cheesy muffin for Monday mornings. Perfect with a cup of coffee or tea.
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 Cups All Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 Cup Quinoa Flour
  • 1 Tbsp Baking Powder
  • 1/8 Tsp Salt
  • 3/4 Cup Freshly grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 1/2 Cup Pine Nuts
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 1 Cup Buttermilk
  • 6 Tbsp Butter, softened
  • Topping: 4 Tsp grated parmesan cheese, 1/4 cup pine nuts
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400F
  2. Line a muffin pan with 12 muffin liners
  3. For the topping, combine parmesan and pine nuts and set aside
  4. In a large bowl, combine flour, quinoa flour, baking powder and salt with a whisk
  5. Stir in the parmesan and pine nuts
  6. In a medium bowl, lightly beat the eggs and then beat in the buttermilk and oil
  7. In the large bowl with the flour, make a well in the centre and pour in the liquid mixture
  8. Stir gently until just combined. Be sure not to over mix
  9. Spoon the batter into prepared muffin pan. Sprinkle topping over the batter
  10. Bake for about 20 minutes until well risen and golden brown
  11. Allow muffins to cool for about 5 minutes.
Notes

This recipe yields 12 muffins

The pine nuts were not very well behaved! They kept falling off as you took a bite, much to the annoyance of my hubby :-) He enjoyed these muffins but wished there was MORE CHEESE. That seems to the answer to everything these days. More cheese. Duly noted.

 

Parmesan Quinoa & Pine Nut Muffins

 

Quite a tasty muffin. I enjoyed them. But now I have to figure out how to make it even more cheesy.

 

Parmesan Quinoa & Pine Nut Muffins

 

Happy Monday!!!

 

Muffin Monday is an initiative by Baker Street. A culinary journey of sharing a wickedly delicious muffin recipe every week. Drop in a quick line to join her on her journey to make the world smile and beat glum Monday mornings week after week. 

Link to the Muffin Monday page: http://bakerstreet.tv/muffin-monday/

Link to Muffin 101: http://bakerstreet.tv/muffin-monday/muffin-101/

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Quinoa Brownies

Oct 18, 2012 by

Today, I’m doing a guest post for Kimberly over at Badger Girl Learns To Cook! Kimberly has a weekly feature called Healthy Blogger Thursdays and I was fortunate enough to be invited! I’m really happy to be a part of such a wonderful network of food bloggers. We truly support each other and get introduced to new bloggers regularly. Check out Kimberly’s blog and follow her culinary journey focusing on clean eating and using whole foods in her diet. You’ll also be introduced to such amazing health conscious bloggers that inspire with wonderful recipes, health tips, and other health related topics.

Todays recipe is just so simple. I’m going to call it healthy because my favourite superfood is included and you probably wouldn’t even know. I rave about Quinoa all the time because of its wonderful benefits and versatility. I adapted this recipe from Donna Hay’s cookbook “Fast, Fresh, Simple”. The original title is “Standby Brownies” since cocoa powder is used instead of melting chocolate. Please visit Kimberly’s blog for the full recipe and my very first guest post :-)

Quinoa Brownies

 

Sometimes you just really need a chocolate fix. I do, all the time! Quinoa Brownies certainly hit the spot ~ especially with a glass of really cold Almond Milk.

 

Quinoa Brownies

 

I just love Kimberly’s “can-do” attitude towards eliminating processed foods and learning how to cook! It’s both refreshing and inspiring! Thank you Kimberly for including me as part of your Healthy Blogger Series!

 

~Lyn

 

 

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Red Quinoa and Avocado Salad with Goldenberries, Edamame and a Lemon-Cumin Vinaigrette

May 25, 2012 by

Some women buy shoes. Others buy clothes, or even make up. I use to be one of those women. I do get the occasional urge to indulge every now and again. But my real problem is visiting my health food store. Lets face it. Some of the things I use aren’t sold at the conventional grocery stores and if they are, I end up paying more than I would at the health food store. At least, that has been my personal experience. I no longer buy quinoa from the supermarket. No way! Another thing I like about my health food store is that I learn about a new ingredient upon every single visit. If I see something that peaks my interest, all I have to do is ask about it. I really enjoy going there.

Upon my last trip, I grabbed a few items, Red Quinoa was one of them. I’ve been using the regular Quinoa for a few years now but I really wanted to try the red, even just for the colourful appeal. I imagined its rich deep red colour against something green or yellow. I was flipping through Fine Cooking’s Magazine – CookFresh Spring 2012 edition, and saw a beautiful recipe using Red Quinoa. I didn’t have all the ingredients but it inspired me to get some things together. I picked up a pack of dried Goldenberries (also known as cape gooseberries) at an event a few weeks ago and I thought this was an awesome time to experiment with them.

 

Red Quinoa and Avocado Salad with Goldenberries, Edamame and a Lemon-Cumin Vinaigrette

 

Red Quinoa and Avocado Salad with Goldenberries, Edamame and a Lemon-Cumin Vinaigrette
Recipe Type: Main
Author: Lyn adapted from Fine Cooking
Prep time: 25 mins
Total time: 25 mins
Serves: 2
A gluten-free, vegetarian meal that can be ready in minutes.
Ingredients
  • 2 Tbsp Raisins
  • 2 Tbsp Goldenberries
  • 3 Tbsp Edamame, thawed from frozen
  • 1/2 Cup Quinoa, rinsed well
  • 1 Cup Vegetable Broth (or water, if you prefer)
  • 1 Large Lemon
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1/8 Tsp Ground Cumin
  • 1/8 Tsp Paprika
  • 1 Medium Avocado, pitted and cut into bite sized chunks
  • 1 Scallion, thinly sliced
  • Kosher Salt
  • Black Pepper
Instructions
  1. In a small bowl, soak the raisins and goldenberries in hot water for 5 minutes. Drain and set aside.
  2. In a small pot, add quinoa, a pinch of salt and a cup of vegetable broth to a boil. Cover and reduce to a simmer until all the water has been absorbed, about 15 minutes
  3. Fluff quinoa and remove from heat and allow to cool
  4. Grate zest from the lemon and combine with the juice from the lemon in a small bowl
  5. To the lemon juice, add olive oil, cumin, paprika and a pinch of salt, whisk to combine
  6. In a medium bowl, toss vinaigrette with quinoa, raisins, goldenberries, edamame, avocado and scallion.
  7. Plate and serve, enjoy.

 

I wish I could tell you that there was more to it than this, but just put the ingredients into a bowl. Add the vinaigrette and toss. Plate and serve.

 

Red Quinoa, Avocado, Raisins, Edamame, Goldenberries, Scallions

 

This is an excellent way to use up left over quinoa. Regular White Quinoa can be used if you don’t have the red. It will taste just as good and look just as lovely.

 

Red Quinoa and Avocado Salad with Goldenberries, Edamame and a Lemon-Cumin Vinaigrette

 

Happy Friday Friends!

 

~Lyn

 

 

 

 

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Quinoa Cakes With Apple Sauce

Apr 19, 2012 by

I was super excited when I came across this recipe. I love Quinoa. It is by far my most favourite grain. It can be cooked in a variety of ways, and provides many nutritional benefits to my joy and comfort :-) I like to make “special pancakes” for my kids. This certainly is a very special pancake. I also wanted to make Apple Sauce to go with it. I got the Quinoa Cakes recipe from Martha Stewart. I swear, her recipes never fail me! Even when I make slight substitutions, whatever I make always comes out great.

I was attracted to this recipe because I wanted to have some kid-friendly quinoa recipes ready to go. I need them to be easy, tasty and enjoyable by my kids. I believe this did the trick. My apple sauce addition paired well with them and tasted awesome! The texture came out so smooth – the quinoa was hardly noticeable. Amazing.

 

Quinoa Cakes with Apple Sauce

 

 

Quinoa Pancakes With Apple Sauce
Recipe Type: Breakfast or Brunch
Author: Lyn
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 1 hour
Total time: 1 hour 15 mins
Serves: 4-6
A healthy pancake made with superfood Quinoa
Ingredients
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, unbleached
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp coarse salt
  • 1 egg, plus 1 egg white
  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup low-fat milk
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup + more for serving
  • Cooking spray
  • Apple Sauce:
  • 2 Apples, peeled, cores removed, diced (I used Royal Gala)
  • 1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1/4 Tsp Cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp Apple Juice
Instructions
  1. Start the apple sauce first – place apple, sugar, cinnamon and apple juice in a small saucepan. Cover and cook on low heat 30-45 minutes or until you have reached a desired consistency. Stir occasionally every 15 minutes.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix quinoa, flour, baking powder and salt
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together egg, egg white, butter, milk and syrup until smooth
  4. Add wet ingredients into dry
  5. Lightly coat a non-stick skillet with cooking spray and bring to medium heat
  6. Drop batter by heaping tablespoonful into skillet
  7. Cook until bubbles appear on top for about 2 minutes
  8. Flip and cook until golden brown for another 2 minutes
  9. Repeat in batches until batter is finished
  10. Serve with apple sauce or fruits and maple syrup
Notes

This recipe yields about 18 2-inch pancakes
Quinoa Cake Recipe from http://www.marthastewart.com/329047/quinoa-cakes
The apple sauce took the longest to cook – about 40 minutes to reduce

 

See the difference between cooked and uncooked Quinoa? It fluffs up quite a bit. A little goes a long way. I usually cook one cup of quinoa at a time and it lasts me a few days – depending on what I end up doing with it.

 

Uncooked & Cooked Quinoa

 

Here’s the batter – ready to be spooned into the skillet. Making them this small meant a few batches, but it was well worth it. I’ll try making them a little bigger next time.

 

Quinoa Cake Batter

 

I don’t know about you, but I always mess up the first batch. The second set is usually a lot better. They taste the same, but aren’t as pretty.

 

Quinoa Cakes in skillet

 

They are so tiny and cook quickly, so you can’t leave them unattended. The most I could do was stir the apple sauce and then get back to the cakes.

 

Quinoa Cakes in skillet

 

Confession: I popped a few of these into my mouth before I added the syrup and apple sauce. Sorry. They smelled really good.

 

Naked Quinoa Cakes

 

And then there was a feast.

 

Quinoa Cakes with Apple Sauce and Maple Syrup

 

We had leftovers.

Brilliant.

Take good care, friends!

~Lyn

 

 

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