Friday, March 24, 2017

Quinoa



"Over rated."

That was my thought about quinoa.

I had tried it once, in a recipe, and I didn't like it.

I had no need to try it again.

Despite the fact that I had a decent supply of uncooked quinoa in my pantry.

"Understated."

"Under estimated."

That's my new thoughts about quinoa.

My boy cherub really likes quinoa.

The other day, I was making a dinner the girl cherub had asked for and I thought,

"I'll make pasta for those who want it and quinoa for my boy cherub."

But when I told everyone of the plan, they all wanted quinoa.

Except me.

But I wasn't willing to mess up to pots just to make me pasta.

So I made the quinoa and had every intention of just "dealing with it."

I placed all the ingredients on the counter for everyone to make their own quinoa bowl.

I was excited.

Not.

Quinoa.

Roasted tomatoes.

Roasted peppers and zucchini.

Smoked chicken.

Caramelized onions.

Wilted spinach.

Oh. My. Word!

I loved it!

As in legitimately loved it!

The boy cherub asked if we could have that meal at least once a week.

Sure -- that sounded good at the time.

But by week three, everyone would be tired of it, no doubt!

After cleaning up from dinner, I began to research quinoa recipes.

Holy Cow! 

It's endless!

Needless to say, I became inspired!

The next morning, I made a breakfast quinoa!

Truth be told -- I made a simple quinoa bowl for dinner the same night.

I was by myself, so it just made sense!

Quinoa is a grain and is naturally gluten free.  It also packs a punch of protein and versatility.

Quinoa takes on the flavor profile of ingredients that you place with it. 

Quinoa is a helper!

To cook quinoa:

1 cup quinoa
water
2 cups liquid:  water, broth, juice

With a fine mesh strainer, place 1 cup of quinoa in the strainer and run under cold water for 2 minutes.  This will remove the bitter flavor that can sometimes accompany quinoa.

In a medium sized sauce pan with a lid, place 2 cups of liquid and 1 cup of quinoa over medium heat.
I used 2 cups chicken stock for dinner.
I used 3/4 cup pineapple juice, 1/4 cup coconut milk, and 1 cup water for the breakfast quinoa.

Bring the mixture to a hard boil.  Place a lid on the pan and reduce heat to low.

Cook for about 15 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed.

Remove the lid and fluff the quinoa with a fork.  Serve immediately or place in the refrigerator to cool.

To make a dinner bowl, use the above suggestions in the post.

To make a breakfast bowl, top with a smidge of maple syrup, chopped bananas, and warmed peanut butter for a delicious breakfast with real staying power.




Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Mediterranean Roasted Potatoes



By the blog posts, one might think it is a dry spell of cooking around our house.

That isn't really the case.

However, it is the case of "new" recipes.

Sometimes, those "tried and true" recipes,

where you don't even have to really think about it,

and no one at the table asks, "so, what is this?"

are sometimes just easier when everything is feeling like it's spinning 100 miles an hour!

Oh, we've been trying new things.

And I have the pictures to prove post about it . . .

but the "new" recipes are just a little less frequent these days!

Unless it was this dinner where I put together 2 new recipes for us to try!

Everything was a hit,

especially these roasted potatoes.

As you know, we adore roasted veggies.

In my opinion, they're easier to cook

and tastes simply delicious!

I paired these potatoes with roasted Brussel  Sprouts and a Greek lemon chicken.

It was a winner!

I used Yukon gold potatoes.  I counted 2 per person, knowing that we might have left-overs, but thinking the left-overs would be great for lunch the next day.

You can use any potato you prefer, you just might have to adjust your seasonings if you are using more potatoes.

One of the spices you will want to use, is this spice mix that I posted not too long ago.
http://karen-proverbs31.blogspot.com/2017/03/jens-spice-mix.html

Of course, you are free to ad-lib and make a substitution for this teaspoon of flavor.

Mediterranean Roasted Potatoes

8 Yukon gold potatoes, washed and quartered
1 TBSP oil
1 tsp salt
1 tsp. pepper
2 tsp. crushed dry oregano
1 tsp. Jen's spice mix
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1 tsp. minced garlic

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.  Lightly spray the foil with a non-stick cooking spray or very lightly rub with oil.

In a large bowl, place the quartered potatoes and all of the remaining ingredients.  Toss to coat well.

Arrange the potatoes on the baking sheet in a single layer.

Roast in the oven for 30-40 minutes, or until golden brown and done.

Serve warm.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Jen's Spice Mix

Yes!  The picture is sideways!  I can NOT get it right!

 

Waaaay back in 2015, we were moving from Dallas, Texas.

Some sweet friends of mine made a "going away" basket for me.

It was filled with darling things, that I still enjoy . . . including the cute basket!

One of the things in the moving basking was a very yummy and versatile spice mix.

One of the girls made it.

I've used it on so many things and I'm continually impressed with how it tastes.

Of course, I couldn't go without the recipe!

So when I asked, she willingly gave!

Which means I am willingly sharing with you too!

I don't know the name of the mix and I do know she found the recipe somewhere.

I've never seen a recipe just like this one . . . and I really dig this one!

I didn't know the name, so I named it after my friend.

I'm creative that way.

This mix does take several ingredients, but would be so good to share with friends.

You could give it a Christmas time with a little label, "'Tis the Season."

Get it?

 . . . Christmas season . . .and a season-ing.

Cute!

Anyways --

here's the recipe!

You'll want to use it on the Mediterranean Roasted Potatoes that I'll be posting about!

Jen's Spice Mix

1 TBSP dried oregano
2 tsp. dried rosemary
1 TBSP dried basil
1 TBSP dried parsley
1 TBSP garlic powder
1 tsp. black pepper
2 tsp. crushed red pepper (you could omit this if you desire)
1 tsp. thyme
1 TBSP dehydrated onion
1 1/2 tsp. dehydrated garlic (NOT garlic powder or garlic salt . . .little dehydrated garlics)

Place everything in a bowl and mix well.

Place in a container and use as desired.