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Upside-Down Pineapple Quinoa Cake

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    Topping
    1/4 cup (60 mL) light brown sugar, turbinado, or sucanat
    1 - 15 oz (425 g) can pineapple slices in unsweetened juice, drained (reserve 1/4 cup/60 mL juice)

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    Cake
    1 cup (250 mL) cooked white quinoa
    2 free-range eggs, separated into yolks and whites
    1/3 cup (80 mL) light brown sugar or sucanat
    1/2 cup (125 mL) plain, low-fat yogourt
    1/3 cup (80 mL) unsweetened applesauce
    1 tsp (5 mL) pure vanilla extract
    3/4 cup (180 mL) whole wheat pastry flour
    1 tsp (5 mL) ground cinnamon
    1/2 tsp (2 mL) ground nutmeg
    2 tsp (10 mL) baking powder
    1/2 tsp (2 mL) baking soda
    1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt

    Preheat oven to 350 F (180 C).

    To prepare topping: stir together sugar and reserved pineapple juice in small saucepan over high heat. Boil until mixture is thick and syrupy, about 3 minutes.

    Lightly grease 8 x 8 x 2 in (2 L) baking pan with vegetable oil. Pour boiled syrup into the bottom of pan and artfully top syrup with pineapple slices. Set aside.

    In food processor, process cooked quinoa, egg yolks, sugar, yogourt, applesauce, and vanilla extract until very smooth, about 2 minutes.

    In large bowl, whisk together whole wheat pastry flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

    In another large bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form.

    Add quinoa mixture to flour mixture and stir together until no flour streaks remain. With spatula, gently fold egg whites into quinoa batter until just incorporated. Gently spoon cake batter over pineapple.

    Bake in centre of oven until puffed and golden, and a wooden skewer inserted in the cake’s centre comes out clean, about 35 to 40 minutes.

    Allow cake to cool for 10 minutes in cake pan before running a thin knife around the edges and inverting the cake onto a serving plate.

    Serves 9.

    Each serving contains: 113 calories; 4 g protein; 2 g total fat (0 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 21 g carbohydrates; 2 g fibre; 227 mg sodium

    Source: "Taste of the Tropics", alive #345, July 2011

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    Upside-Down Pineapple Quinoa Cake

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    You might think of protein as something you mainly get from a meal and, therefore, not a component of dessert. But, if you’re going to opt for dessert from time to time, why not consider working in ingredients that go big on this important macronutrient? It’s easier (and more delicious) than you may think! Protein is an essential part of every cell in your body and plays a starring role in bone, muscle, and skin health. So, certainly, you want to make sure you’re eating enough. And it’s best to spread protein intake throughout the day, since your body needs a continual supply. This is why it can be a great idea to try to include protein in your desserts. When protein is provided in sufficient amounts in a dessert, it may help you feel more satiated and help temper blood sugar swings. Plus, in many cases, that protein comes in a package of other nutritional benefits. For instance, if you’re eating a dessert made with protein-packed Greek yogurt, you’re not just getting protein; you’re getting all the yogurt’s bone-benefitting calcium and immune-boosting probiotics, too. Adding nuts to your dessert doesn’t just provide plant-based protein, but it also provides heart-healthy fats. Yes, desserts need not be just empty calories. Ready for a treat? These protein-filled desserts with a healthy twist are dietitian-approved—and delicious.