Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Quinoa Spinach Delight

I usually don't post recipes on here, but once in awhile I make up something so delicious I feel it would be bad karma to not share with all of you fine folks.


Quinoa Spinach Delight

I firmly believe every recipe title should end in "Delight".  Or "Surprise".

OK, so I'm not much of a measuring type, but rest assured this is an extremely forgiving recipe, and it just isn't a huge deal how much of each thing you put in.

Start with some quinoa and a broth of your choosing:

Sometimes I make my own broth, sometimes I stock up with what's on sale.  It's great with chicken or veggie (and then you've got yourself a vegan recipe if you're into that sort of thing.)
The next step is the most important:  Rinse the shit outta that quinoa.  Measure it out, and then put it in a fine mesh strainer and rinse until all of the bubbles are gone.  The Incas used that soapy residue that you're rinsing off to launder their clothes, and you can bet you do not want that flavor in your dish.
So for this recipe, I'll use 1 cup of quinoa.  Rinse it.  Put it in a pot.
Add in 2 cups broth.  That's the key with quinoa - use twice as much liquid as quinoa, plus a little extra if you forget you have the burner on high while you're wrestling markers out of a toddler's hand and need to put some moisture back in.  Not that that has ever happened to me.
Turn the burner on, and add some salt and red pepper flakes.  I don't measure this, but it's a small pinch of salt and a larger pinch of pepper flakes.
Then add some minced garlic.  I buy the roasted stuff in the jars because it's handy and I hate peeling garlic cloves.  How much?
Uhhh, this much.
 It's probably about a teaspoon, or two cloves minced.  Seriously though, it DOES NOT MATTER.  Just get some garlic in there.
Now cook on medium high heat for awhile, until the liquid starts soaking into the quinoa.  Stir occasionally if you're that dedicated (I am not.)
When it's cooked down a bit (probably 10 minutes) throw in a bunch, bunches, handfuls of spinach.  I used three huge handfuls in this pot and I could have gone with more. 

I also threw in a handful (1/3 C?) chopped Vidalia onions

Stir it around a bit, and add a bit more broth if it's looking like it needs it.

Here's how to tell when the quinoa is done:

See how the little grains are getting translucent and you can see some of the lines around the outside that makes them look like seashells?  It means you're getting close.

Close, but no cigar.

Now see how the germ is separating from the grain?  If you see little Cs and Os everywhere, you're good to go. 

Mmm.  Germ.
When it's ready to serve, I squeeze a little lemon juice  on it and try to not drool everywhere.

Today, I served it up to my professional food critic:

I do not like eating under scrutiny, Mother. 
Mmm.. is that a hint of lemon?
Get in my belllyy..
Must. Use. Hands. 

 So, there you have it.   Company-worthy delicious, packed full of nutritional goodness, and a great side dish or main course.  Plus it's pretty to look at, good hot or cold, and keeps well in the fridge.  It might be the perfect recipe for our household.

Here's the ingredient list for reference:

  • 1 C quinoa
  • 2 C broth
  • pinch salt
  • pinch red pepper flakes
  • small handful chopped onions
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • approx 4 C spinach
  • squeeze lemon juice


  1. Oh man, I totally forgot to rinse my quinoa the other night... that explains the not so great taste! This recipe sounds delish! And your food critique is adorable :)

  2. Okay I will officially be LESS lazy about rinsing my quinoa. I love that your kid isn't eating chicken nuggets and mac n cheese here.

  3. My boyfriend and I are into quinoa, so I'll have to make this up for him sometime! Thanks for sharing! I've tried this recipe and really love it:

  4. I LOVED this recipe!! My twins also loved it so maybe it's a twin thing? In any case, I shared it with a few of my FB friends giving you proper credit. Thanks so much!!

    Oh, and I'd be remiss if I didn't tell you that I complained about "rinsing the shit outta" it, but did it anyway. That's the worst part about cooking quinoa in my book. Well, I posted questions to my friends on FB about what rinsing methods they use and man, did I ever get responses! Quinoa is apparently a hot subject!!

    Thank you for introducing me to a new meal item...and I loved the pics and the descriptions!!

  5. While this looks yummy, I think the kiddo's captions are the best part.


Hearing from you makes me happy! :)

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