Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-WAH, not keenoah, or kinaw) is a grain we use a lot in our cooking. It is so versatile and can be used in so many different meals. We add it for extra protein to our lunch and dinner salads and other dishes as a substitue to rice. We’ve often cooked it for our friends, but a lot of the time, people have said that they don’t know how to cook it. This is why we’ve decided to help you out and give you simple step by step instructions on how to cook quinoa.
What’s the big deal about Quinoa?
Despite the difficult pronunciation, quinoa is a popular ‘super food’ that is used by so many people. It is gluten free, making it great for people with gluten intolerances. It is loaded with important nutrients for good health, is high in protein, low GI, contains essential minerals and is loaded with antioxidants. There are plenty more benefits to quinoa but we don’t want to go on too much!
Types of Quinoa
There are three main types of quinoa you find in health food stores and supermarkets;
We have used all three different types before. Sometime we like white, other times we have red or black. It just depends on what we feel like at the time. We’ve found that the red and black have more of an earthy, nutty taste compared to the white. Red also looks nice in salads, but it’s really up to you what you get. Regardless of the type, it still cooks the same.
It is really important to thoroughly rise your quinoa before cooking. It contains a natural coating called saponin, that, if not removed, leaves the quinoa tasting really bitter and soapy. Cooking quinoa is actually really simple, similar to the way you might cook cous cous or rice. We reckon it’s actually easier than cooking rice from scratch which is why we love to use it!
How much to cook quinoa?
We have found that 1 cup of raw quinoa yields enough for about 4 servings. So if we only want a little bit, we use 1/2 cup raw quinoa. For the liquid, you just need to double the amount of raw quinoa you’ve used. So 1/2 cup of raw quinoa needs 1 cup of water.
How to store quinoa?
We love the fact that we can freeze quinoa if we don’t use all of it. Simply put the quinoa in snap lock bags and when ready to serve again, turn out on to a plate, and defrost in microwave until defrosted and hot. So simple! We’ve found that is really helpful for lunch prep because it is so easy!
So, after all that, we hope you can now enjoy quinoa as a part of your healthy lifestyle! Good luck with the cooking!
- Pour raw quinoa into a sieve, and rinse thoroughly for about 2-3 minutes until all the quinoa is wet and rinsed. Set aside to drain
- Heat olive oil in a saucepan until hot (not too hot!)
- Add the quinoa to the olive oil and cook for about 1 minute just until dried off.
- Add the water and stir.
- Bring to the boil.
- Reduce heat to low, and simmer for 15-20 minutes until water is absorbed and quinoa is cooked. The quinoa looks like tiny little spirals when ready.
- Leave to stand for 5 minutes covered.
- Fluff, and serve when ready.
If the quinoa is still not cooked after 15-20 minutes, bring back to low heat until all water is absorbed.
How to Cook Quinoa – http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-cook-quinoa-cooking-lessons-from-the-kitchn-63344
11 Prove Health Benefits of Quinoa – http://authoritynutrition.com/11-proven-benefits-of-quinoa/