Today I tried cooking quinoa, which I've eaten before but never cooked from it's dry state. Note to self; it gets really gummy really quickly if you overcook it even a tiny bit.
Overall I liked the end result; I made a salad out of it with scallion, cilantro, cucumber, craisins and pecans (recipe at bottom). The dressing, however, needs to be doubled. Quinoa is like potato salad - it sucks up the dressing almost immediately so it can be really dry, in addition to gummy.
Okay this is sounding worse than I intend. It really was okay, and it's a grain with an amazing amount of protein in it which is good - because I don't think I'm getting enough protein in my diet. I need to ensure somehow that I don't loose too much muscle along fat, and yes I realize rejoining the gym would be helpful to that end.
Quinoa, Cranberry & Pecan Salad
Serves 10 / This hearty salad has a zesty combination of textures and contrasting flavors. Plus, it's loaded with fiber and nutrients. Prep time: 15 minutes Cooking time: 25-30 minutes
3 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cups quinoa
1 bunch green onions, finely sliced
1/2 cup dried cranberries, diced
1/3 cup cilantro, finely chopped
3/4 cup cucumber, finely diced
3/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1. Bring water to a boil. Add quinoa; stir, cover, and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook until quinoa is soft and water is absorbed — about 25-30 minutes.
2. Add green onions, dried cranberries, cilantro and celery to a large salad bowl. Toast the pecans in a small skillet and add to the salad bowl (optional). Add the olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar, sesame oil, salt and peppers to the bowl. Stir to mix.
3. Stir in the quinoa when it has cooked and cooled slightly. Set aside for an hour if possible to allow flavors to marry; serve at room temperature.
Fat: 9 grams
Fat Calories: 42