Last weekend, I met up with friends to celebrate 20 years since our dietetic internship. I cannot believe it’s been that long. Our internship was in the amazing city of New Orleans. To say we had fun and enjoyed the food culture in New Orleans is an understatement.
So it’s no surprise that our California celebration centered around food. On Saturday, my friend Caroline made a homemade pico de gallo with fresh tomatoes grown in the garden. For dinner, we grilled steaks and my friend Rochelle made quinoa as a side dish. She added greens, carrots and green onions. It was yummy.
I am a late bloomer when it comes to cooking compared to these ladies, but I’m finding my way. I was most interested in the quinoa dish as I’ve been looking to add more whole-grain side dishes to my dinner rotation. Even though it has been popular for some time, I don’t regularly make quinoa. I’m weird like that. The more trendy a food becomes, the less fire there is under my butt to try it.
So inspired from my trip, I came home to work on something similar. I remember reading that quinoa cooks nicely in the rice cooker. It also cooks super fast in the Instant Pot. So I pulled out my rice cooker, sautéed some veggies and came out with the perfect side dish. It was especially good topped with baked shrimp.
What’s your favorite way to make quinoa?
- 1 cup quinoa (if you have a very fine mesh colander, rinse first)
- 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- ½ cup chopped onion
- 1 cup chopped carrots
- 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
- 3-4 handfuls of baby spinach (or other green), chopped
- salt and pepper to taste
- Parmesan cheese (optional)
- Put broth and quinoa in rice cooker and turn on.
- While quinoa is cooking, in a medium sauce pan, sauté onion and carrots in oil until tender, about 2-3 minutes. Add garlic and spinach and saute another minute.
- Turn heat to low and cover until carrots soften about 5-10 minutes. When quinoa is done, let it sit for about 5 minutes, then add to veggies and stir. Add salt and pepper to taste and top with Parmesan cheese if desired. Serve warm.
For more family-style recipes, check out Maryann’s book The Family Dinner Solution