My new life in Argentina continues to excite and challenge me, but I have to admit that I find it a bit ironic, that I now live in quinoa’s native region, and yet I have to pay more for it than I did when I was in the States! At 150 peso per kilo, it is easily the most expensive cereal we buy. Especially when compared to lentils at 17 peso per kilo, or brown rice at just 15 peso per kilo!
Thankfully it’s not out of our reach as it is becoming for many Argentines. The reason quinoa is becoming so expensive in one of the top producing nations is obviously very complex, however one of the simplest explanations is because quinoa has become more popular as it's healthful properties have become known.
As I wrote in an older post on pseudograins, quinoa is not a grain, but actually a seed. As such, it is naturally gluten-free. It is also high in iron, B vitamins and calcium, as well as boasting a great protein profile, containing roughly 15% of it’s calories from protein.
This weeks recipe is a light and fluffy lemon and herb quinoa that is perfect for summer time. It is versatile, and can be served as a side dish or as the main attraction. We served the dish on July 9, Argentina's Independence day (hence the Albicelete flowers,) and accompanied it with a simple beet and cabbage salad. Both dishes were enjoyed by all. Best of all, the dish is quick and easy to prepare, but has a sophisticated taste as the Italian herbs blend beautifully with the cumin and lemon.
Lemon and herb Quinoa
2 cups uncooked quinoa
1 cup brussel sprouts - steamed and halved
1 juiced lemon
1 1/2” of lemon zest
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon oregano
¼ teaspoon rosemary
Salt and pepper to taste
4 ½ cups veggie broth
Bring the broth to a boil and add the quinoa. Cook for about 10 minutes and add the lemon zest, and spices. Keep the lemon juice to the side for now.
Once the broth is almost fully absorbed and the quinoa is close to being ready, add the steamed brussel sprouts. Combine well so the flavors of the quinoa begin to set. I also added a half cup of cooked black beans to the dish.
Once the broth has been completely absorbed, squeeze the juice of the lemon onto the hot quinoa and brussel sprouts and toss well.
This dish can be served hot or cold.
As always the information presented in this blog is for educational purposes only. It should not be considered as specific medical, nutritional, lifestyle, or other health-related advice.