Making a quinoa loaf

The holidays this year have been crazy. We didn’t even have time to make our typical multi course holiday meal to enjoy slowly throughout many days. Instead I settled on making one dish that was somewhat festive. To avoid using meat, I found this whole foods recipe for a quinoa loaf with mushrooms and peas.  I didn’t get that many pictures, but you basically make a paste with oatmeal and chickpeas and then stir in the mushrooms, peas, onion, sun dried tomatoes, and quinoa. To bake it, the mixture is pressed into a loaf pan:

After baking:

The loaf was good, but definitely go heavy on the spices and add any additional spices that you like. To reheat slices, I first heated them in the microwave and then browned the outside on a pan so that it would be toasted. We added either some hot sauce or tapenade to the top.

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Cooking with Quinoa… a fun grain!

Ever since I came across quinoa, I’ve been interested in recipes that I come across that use it. It’s a very small seed and when you cook it up, it opens up and looks like a little spiral.

Tonight I used this recipe but modified it to my taste of course. I added zucchini, garlic, some left over vegetable broth, more thyme, oregano from the garden, and a special spice mix that I got at the Savory Spice Shop on 6th Street.

The ingredients ready to go – carrots, zucchini, onion, tomato, and garlic:

First, the onions were sauteed in a bit of olive oil and some crushed garlic:

After appropriately cooked, but not overcooked so they would stay crunchy, I added the quinoa and toasted it for a few minutes:

Next, the vegetable broth and water along with herbs (thyme, oregano, pepper, spice mix) were added to the pot. That simmered for a few minutes and then the carrots and zucchini was added:

After the liquid was absorbed, the tomatoes and spinach were mixed in. I had a bit too much spinach and had to take some out. Whoa, so much spinach!

Once the spinach was fully cooked down, I served it with some shredded Parmesan on top.  Not bad for a light summer time meal, but I’m still trying to figure out how to get more flavor in quinoa dishes.

Look at all of those colors – such a healthy dish!