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Sunday, March 18, 2012

Cranberry Quinoa

Quinoa is a seed which was highly valued by the ancient Aztec's and Mayan's because it's packed full of protein and nutrition. This dish is light, and simple to prepare when you know how. :-) The cranberries add color and a tasty twist. Some people prefer to soak quinoa overnight to remove any residual bitterness, but I have never found this necessary so far.

Ekadashi friendly and vegan. :-)

2 cups quinoa, rinsed and drained
3 3/4 cups water
1 tsp coconut oil or ghee
Sea salt to taste
2 tsp of Italian seasoning or herbs of your choice
1/2 tsp paprika powder
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1 handful dried cranberries
1 handful toasted sunflower seeds
1/2 cup freshly chopped cilantro or parsley (optional)
A dash of extra virgin olive oil

Combine quinoa, water, oil/ghee, salt, seasoning and spices. Bring to a boil and then turn heat to low and cook covered for 15 minutes. It should be ready, soft and moist without being sticky. If its still got liquid, let it cook off uncovered for a few mins. Remove from heat, add in the cranberries and sunflower seeds, cover and let it sit for a few minutes - this helps it get fluffy and the cranberries to soften up. Add cilantro, and olive oil and toss to mix. Great served warm alongside a salad.

*On non-Ekadashi day's I like to sprinkle a mixture of freshly toasted and ground sesame seeds, nutritional yeast and sea salt over the top to amp up the flavor and nutrition. Sesame is a fantastic source of calcium amongst other things!

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