Quinoa – breakfast lunch and dinner

26 Apr

Last week in our after-school cooking class, we made quinoa salad.

Yay! Quinoa, I love it! Cheered one first grader. She is a fan of the quinoa pilaf we serve at her school at lunch some days. I am originally from Ecuador where quinoa is a staple, but never had it outside of soup until a handful of years ago. It is a delightful little grain. It unfurls into tiny spirals when cooked, and has a balanced content of essential amino acids – meaning it is  a great high quality protein food. It also is  good source of vitamin E, thiamine, iron, magnesium and zinc. What’s to love is that it is so versatile. You can use it in any grain or pasta recipe. You can make a quinoa porridge for breakfast (like oatmeal) or add some cooked quinoa in with a couple of veggies to make a breakfast egg scramble. You can saute it up with veggies for lunch, add it to a wrap or top it on a salad. You can cook it with potatoes and leeks for a simply delicious dinner soup.

On this day, in this class, it was a salad. Truth be told we ate this warm, but it is great cold and even better the next day cold, so I maintain calling it a salad. The students got to chop peppers, onions, and sweet potatoes. They measured out ingredients and tasted spices. They looked at pictures that showed how quinoa grows and is harvested before making it’s way to our table. Everyone added love and good thoughts to the pot as we stirred (Spiderman, playdates, sunshine, farmers..), and then set the table to partake in our work. It was delicious.

Here’s the recipe:

You can substitute any vegetables in this and be assured a pretty tasty result. Have a favorite quinoa recipe? Share it!

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