Quinoa (pronounced as KEEN-WAH) has become increasingly popular among health-conscious people. Gluten-free, high in protein with all nine essential amino acids in sufficient quantity, high in fiber, magnesium, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, vitamin, iron and different antioxidants, quinoa is indeed a super healthy option over other grains. It’s basically a seed that is prepared and eaten like a grain. It has a low glycemic index which is good in controlling blood sugar. These properties have all been linked to weight loss and improved health.
Keeping all the aforementioned health benefits in mind, I have incorporated this super food into my kitchen and love to try out different methods to suit the taste buds of my family. Too often I substitute it for rice or roti in breakfast, lunch or dinner, especially for my gym freak boy! So here is my super easy recipe for Healthy Quinoa Pulao!
Recipe Type: Fusion
Cooking Type: Easy
Preparation time: 10 min
Cooking Time: 20-25 min.
- Quinoa- 1 cup
- Water- 2 cups
- Onion- 1 medium-sized finely chopped.
- Beans- 9-10 nos
- Carrot- 1 medium size
- Capsicum- 1 small
- Sweet Corn-3-4 tbsp
- Ginger 1 tsp finely chopped
- Green chilies- 1 finely chopped or according to taste.
- Black pepper powder- 1 tsp
- Mixed herbs-1/2 tsp
- Salt- to taste
- Cilantro- 1 tbsp finely chopped (optional)
- Olive oil or any refined oil- 2 tbsp
- Wash quinoa in running water thoroughly. Quinoa has a natural coating, called saponin, that can make the cooked grain taste bitter or soapy. Luckily, it’s easy to get rid of this coating by rinsing the quinoa just before cooking. Boxed quinoa is often pre-rinsed, but an additional rinse at home is advisable.
- Boil 2 cups of water with 1/2 tsp of salt. Add quinoa to the boiling water and give it a stir. Reduce the heat and boil it without lid for at least 15 min or till done. The quinoa should absorb all the water and will be fluffy in nature. Let it cool for some time.
- Take a pan. Put 2 tbsp olive oil or any refined oil.
- Put onion and sauté for few seconds. Add chopped ginger and vegetables. Put salt according to taste. Add green chilies. Reduce heat and cover with a lid.
- When the vegetables turn tender add seasoning.
- Add quinoa and gently mix with the vegetables. Decorate with chopped cilantro (optional).
- Serve hot.
Thinking about a one-pot menu for lunch or dinner or a healthy sumptuous breakfast? Go for this super food pulao loaded with veggies. The spices can be altered according to your taste.
Here a few things to keep in mind:
- Do not over boil the grain. The aim is to get fluffy quinoa. Over boiled grain may not give the desired taste and texture.
- Soaking quinoa prior to cooking is absolutely not necessary.
- A point to be noted is that quinoa also has a very high carbohydrate content, which can pose a problem if one is on a low-carb diet. “Even one serving of quinoa is too many carbs for one meal”, says FranziskaSpritzler, RD, author of The Low-Carb Dietitian’s Guide to Health and Beauty.
This was my humble endeavor to pen down a healthy quinoa recipe which is neither bland nor too spicy to suit taste buds. But like in any other art, there is much a scope for further improvement and innovation in cooking as well. Looking forward to ideas and suggestions from readers.