Tuesday, 6 May 2008


I came across a recipe on 101 Cookbooks last night that I just could not resist. At the risk of looking as though I search other food blogs for ideas and then simply regurgitate them as my own, I simply had to share this one with one with you.

I am a masive fan of quinoa. Whilst not technically a grain, quinoa can be used as a substitute for nearly any grain in cooking. Actually the seed of a leafy plant, quinoa’s relatives include spinach, beetroot and Swiss chard.

It's beneficial properties are seemingly endless: a good source of dietary fibre and phosphorus, high in magnesium and iron, easily digested, rich in protein (12%-18%), iron, potassium and other vitamins and minerals, and unlike wheat or rice, quinoa contains a balanced set of essential amino acids for humans, making it an unusually complete food.

And perhaps most importantly it is delicious, with a delicate and slightly nutty flavour, making it a great alternative to cous cous or white rice. I eat this frequently but when I do I always use it in savoury dishes - cooked in a little stock and mixed with roasted vegetables, as an accompaniment or in fact as a dish in itself with a tomato salad on the side, say.

So when I saw this recipe on 101 Cookbooks from Chef MD's Big Book of Culinary Medicine (which unfortuantely seems to only be available in the USA) I knew immediately what I'd be having for breakfast this morning.

WARM AND NUTTY CINNAMON QUINOA adapted from that published on 101 Cookbooks
Serves 4

1 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 cup milk
1 cup water
2 cups fresh blackberries or blueberries
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup chopped nuts, toasted (I used almonds, but pecans or walnuts would be good too)
honey to taste

Combine milk, water and rinsed quinoa in a pan and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer 15 minutes or until most of the liquid is absorbed.

While the quinoa is cooking, lightly toast the nuts in a dry non-stick pan.

When most of the liquid is absorbed turn off the heat, cover and stand for 5 minutes.

Stir in the cinnamon, berries and some of the nuts, reserving some berries and nuts for serving.

Serve in a bowl with the remaining nuts and berries on top. Drizzle over honey to taste.

I usually eat porridge in the morning but I think after today, quinoa is going to be making a regular appearance at my breakfast table.


John L said...

Thanks for the terrific photos...so glad you posted: yes, my book is available in the UK, at least according to Amazon, and my publisher: the link is here:
And more ChefMD recipes are available free, here:
C'ent anni!

Mary said...

I cook up quinoa in my rice cooker like this--with cinnamon. Then add on your favorite toppings like you would with oatmeal and it is yummy!

Kevin said...

I enjoy having quinoa porridge for breakfast. I like the fresh blueberry and nut combo.

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