Quinoa (pronounced “keen-wah”) is an ancient cereal that was eaten by the Incas centuries ago. It was so revered that they called it the “Mother Grain.” Quinoa is so high in protein (13 percent) that the United Nations classified it as a supercrop, giving this tiny nondescript grist the nutritional clout of an Olympic athlete.
Quinoa grains are naturally coated with a bitter resin called saponin. This resin can be removed by washing, but is often removed by mechanically polishing. Unfortunately for us, that process removes the germ, making it a less nutritious form. Choose whole grain quinoa and rinse it well before cooking.
1 cup (250 mL) organic whole grain quinoa
2 tsp (10 mL) organic extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium organic onion, diced
2 stalks organic celery, diced
2 large organic carrots, diced
2 tsp (10 mL) ground cumin
1 tsp (5 mL) ground coriander
2 cups (500 mL) organic lower-sodium chicken or turkey stock
Place quinoa in fine mesh strainer and rinse well. Set aside.
Heat a medium-sized pot with a tightly fitting lid over medium heat. Add oil, onion, celery, and carrots and saute for 3 minutes. Add cumin and coriander and saute for 1 minute. Add quinoa and stock. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to medium, and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork. Cover, let stand for 5 minutes. Spoon into a custard cup and pat down. Invert onto a dinner plate and serve with steamed baby carrots and fresh green beans. Sprinkle with thinly sliced garlic that has been lightly fried in oil. Makes 4 - 1 cup (250 mL) servings.
Each Serving Contains:
240 calories; 10 g protein; 5 g total fat (0.3 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 40 g carbohydrates; 6 g fibre; 240 mg sodium.
source: "Easy on the Tummy", alive #312, October 2008
Pears and chocolate make for a very natural friendship and play together beautifully in this plant-based, dairy-free cake. This cake is dense and rich, with a medley of spices, and enhanced by just a hint of espresso powder, which allows that chocolate flavour to shine through. In addition to slices of pears being laid on top, this cake employs some pear purée to add moisture and sweetness to the slightly nutty texture provided by the whole wheat flour. Pear primer A firm pear such as Bosc, recognizable by its distinctive dusty brown skin, is perfect for this dish. When eaten raw, Bosc pears are crisp and not too sweet. When baked, this variety softens up and its flavours are enhanced, but it maintains its characteristic long-necked, graceful shape. Unlike a Bartlett pear, which turns from green to bright yellow when ripe, Bosc pears don’t change much in colour when ripe. Give it a little nudge with your thumb near the neck of the pear and it will give slightly—that’s how you know you’ve got a ripe one. Compared to other pears, Bosc will still be quite firm.
Many flavours that complement pears—sage, ginger, maple syrup—also go well with butternut squash, so it makes sense to bring the two together. For this autumn salad, mixed greens are tossed with marinated squash ribbons that serve to dress the salad with spicy, gingery brightness. A juicy yet firm medium-sweet pear, such as red Anjou, works well here, and its vibrant red skin makes a pretty plate alongside butternut squash. The finishing touch is a sprinkling of crispy sage and maple syrup-toasted hazelnuts. Refrigerator tip Treat butternut squash ribbons as you would a dressing, keeping them in the refrigerator until ready to use. They will last a few days in the refrigerator, and you can have them on hand to dress small amounts of lettuce. If, rather than making one large salad, you want to serve individual amounts of this salad, just dress a few leaves with some ribbons; cut up pear and fry sage leaves as you serve.
Luscious figs loaded onto hearty flatbread make a satisfying breakfast or brunch. They’re sweet and delicious when paired with savoury cinnamon-flavoured crunchy pumpkin seeds and tart goat cheese. And, with a dough enriched with whole wheat flour, hempseeds, and nigella, these flatbreads are sure to be satisfying. They’re also chock full of fibre and protein, and with 6 mg of iron, you’ll be on your way to 31 percent of the recommended daily value. A freezer favourite By making dough in advance and freezing, you can make these individual flatbreads part of your routine for days when you don’t have much time. Simply portion dough individually right after mixing, allow it to rise in the fridge for 8 to 10 hours, and then freeze in individual containers. To thaw an individual ball of dough, 24 hours before you wish to use it, remove the container from the freezer and allow it to thaw in the refrigerator. At least an hour before baking, allow dough to come up to room temperature outside of the fridge.