quinoa, feta basil, olive oil

Quinoa in the Rice Cooker

Having a small kitchen and trying to be resourceful does lend itself to experimenting with using your rice cooker in creative ways. I have made couscous, oatmeal and quinoa all with good results. I use our rice cooker several times a week… for rice. Picked ours up at Canadian Tire when it was on sale. Our kitchen gets very hot in the summer and this little appliance has made summer cooking much easier.  I picked up some quinoa the other day and have been meaning to experiment with some healthier alternatives to basmati rice.

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The basics for quinoa are simple enough to follow – 2:1 ratio of liquid to quinoa. Press button. Unplug when done and wait 3-5 minutes and fluff with a fork. It can be stored in the fridge and used throughout the week and a healthy and nutritious alternative. Some people like to add salt, some prefer broth or water. I say experiment with what you prefer. I decided to use some chicken broth I had on hand from the night before. I added salt but next time I think I will omit it as the broth had enough salt on its own. Note – if you buy salt free broth, or choose to use water, I would recommend adding a teaspoon to your batch.

Quinoa in the Rice Cooker
Makes about 4 Cups (cooked)

Ingredients:

1 1/2 C     dry quinoa (wash if package suggests)
3 C            chicken broth (or vegetable or water)
1 tsp         salt (optional – if you use unsalted broth or water)

Directions:

Add all ingredients to rice cooker, cover and set to “Cook”. As soon as cooker button turns to “Warm”, unplug and allow to sit for 3-5 minutes. Using a fork or chop stick, fluff the cooked quinoa. Serve immediately or cool and store in fridge for up to a week. Below you will see how I put my batch of quinoa to good use…

Simple Serving Ideas:

A serving of quinoa is a 1/2 cup cooked. Knowing I would want 2 servings, I plated it 2 ways. I could not decide if I felt for feta or parmesan so I ate it both ways. The key to this tasty meal is the lemon juice. It adds a perfect zing to the dish and really hits the spot:

1/2 C     cooked quinoa
1             juice from a fresh lemon (I used about a 1/4 of a lemon)
1 T          feta, crumbled
fresh basil (or other fresh herb)
black pepper

and

1/2 C     cooked quinoa
1             juice from a fresh lemon (I used about a 1/4 of a lemon)
1 T          fresh parmesan, finely grated
fresh basil (or other fresh herb)
black pepper

Either way, both were delicious. I can’t wait to play with the rest of the quinoa I put up in the fridge. Enjoy!

 

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