Quinoa Varieties: What is Red Quinoa? What is Black Quinoa?Quinoa is a quick-cooking, gluten-free whole grain (actually a pseudo whole-grain, because it’s cooked like a whole grain but is the seed of a beet relative). Quinoa grows in a rainbow of colors, but the most commonly available are red quinoa, black quinoa and white quinoa. Taste and nutrition are similar among the colors. White quinoa tends to cook up fluffier, while red quinoa and black quinoa have a crunchier texture and the grains don’t stick together as much.
Quinoa Nutrition Facts
Quinoa is nutritionally renowned for its protein content and while it does have a decent amount, it’s not actually the amount of protein that’s so impressive. Instead it’s the type of protein. Quinoa has the perfect balance of all nine amino acids essential for human nutrition. This type of complete protein is rarely found in plant foods, though common in meats. Quinoa also offers a good dose of fiber and iron. There are 111 calories in each 1/2 cup of cooked quinoa.
How to Cook Quinoa:
Quinoa-to-Water Ratio - If you can cook rice, you can cook quinoa. Combine 1 cup quinoa with 2 cups water (or broth) in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed, 15 to 20 minutes. Fluff with a fork before serving.
How To Bake With Quinoa Flour & How to Cook With Quinoa Flakes
Want to go beyond basic quinoa? Here’s what to look for next: quinoa flakes, which are a lot like rolled oats and can be used similarly, and quinoa flour, a great option for baking, especially gluten-free baking, as in EatingWell’s amazing gluten-free Almond Butter-Quinoa Blondies. Look for both products in well-stocked supermarkets or natural-foods stores. Wondering how to make your own quinoa flour? To make quinoa flour, grind white quinoa in a clean coffee grinder until it’s a fine powder. It won’t be quite as fine as what you get in the store, but will work in recipes for cookies and bars where a really fine texture is not necessary.
Herby quinoa, feta & pomegranate salad
- 300g quinoa
- 1 red onion, finely chopped
- 85g raisins or sultanas
- 100g feta cheese, crumbled
- 200g pomegranates seeds from tub or fruit
- 85g toasted pine nuts or toasted flaked almonds
- small pack each coriander, flat leaf parsley and mint, roughly chopped
- juice 3 lemon
- 1 tsp sugar
- Cook the quinoa following pack instructions – it should be tender but with a little bite. Drain well and spread over a platter or wide, shallow bowl to cool quickly and steam dry.
- When the quinoa is just about cool stir through all of the remaining ingredients with plenty of seasoning.
Quinoa, squash & broccoli salad
- 2 tsp rapeseed oil
- 1 red onion, halved and sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, sliced
- 175g frozen butternut squash chunks
- 140g broccoli, stalks sliced, top cut into small florets
- 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaf
- 250g pack ready-to-eat red & white quinoa
- 2 tbsp chopped parsley
- 25g dried cranberries
- handful pumpkin seeds (optional)
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 50g feta cheese, crumbled
- Heat the oil in a wok with a lid, add the onion and garlic, and fry for 5 mins until softened, then lift from the wok with a slotted spoon. Add the squash, stir round the wok until it starts to colour, then add the broccoli. Sprinkle in 3 tbsp water and the thyme, cover the pan and steam for about 5 mins until the veg is tender.
- Meanwhile, tip quinoa into a bowl and fluff it up. Add the parsley, cranberries, seeds (if using), cooked onion and garlic, and balsamic vinegar, and mix well. Toss through the vegetables with the feta. Will keep in the fridge for 2 days.
- 200g quinoa
- juice 1-2 lemons
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- small bunch mint, chopped
- small bunch flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- bunch spring onions, sliced
- ½ cucumber, deseeded and diced
- handful walnuts, chopped
- Rinse the quinoa well and place in a pan with about double the volume of water. Bring to the boil, cover, reduce the heat and gently simmer for 10 mins or until the grain unwraps itself. Turn off the heat and leave to cool slightly, then drain any remaining water.
- Season the quinoa, stir in the lemon juice and oil and leave to cool fully. Stir in the other ingredients, then serve.
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