Did you all have a good weekend? I know I am always jabbering about my weekends, but not this time round I guess. We have a bunch of sick people in the house. It seems our anti bodies decided to weaken up, all at the same time. As I type this, they are recovering though. Amin to that. So it’s Monday! Monday means it’s time for Skinny Mondays! I love dishing out skinny recipes (Read: healthy recipes) and I look forward to cook something healthy every week! Last week, we had the Skinny Avocado Smoothie and I have received quite an amount of ♥ for that recipe. 🙂 I have a confession to make. I have never eaten quinoa. Yes, that super-grain and one of the healthiest food in the world, I have NEVER tried it. Can you believe it? Well I surely can’t. There are a few reasons as to why I have not had a chance to try it.
- I didn’t how to pronounce it. Never eat something that you can’t pronounce is something I do not believe in though. I can’t pronounce a whole lot of things that I have been stuffing in my mouth!
- I bought a packet of quinoa about 18 months ago. Procrastinated the hell out of it and just threw that $12.90 worth because it expired. Since then I thought, let’s buy only when i am reaaaaallly planning to cook it else $12.90 would go in the drain again. Nothing new though.
- The main reason was that I have heard quinoa can be bitter. I was scared that I was not up to cooking it, I guess.
Now that I know quinoa is not pronounced as kin-now or queen-oh-ah, I am ready to give it a try. I bought a packet last week, and that too organic ones. I did quite a bit of research about quinoa. If you are imagining me with thick glasses and pen stuck behind my ear and thick thick books, sorry you are imagining the wrong person. A frown on the face, fingers typing away and about 126 pages opened on the web browser, including Goggle.com. Yes, that is me. So after some “intensive” research, I was ready to give quinoa a try. I have finally understood the pronunciation as well. Everyone, follow me and say “keen-wah” Yes, it’s keen-wah and you are welcome. My first attempt with Quinoa started with a bang. These Southwestern Quinoa Stuffed Peppers were sooooo good! Quinoa + corn + black beans + tomatoes + feta. All these were stuffed into pretty peppers. It’s was filling and hearty.
We start with these pretty and colorful peppers. Peppers are one of my favorite vegetables. Green, orange, yellow, red…I take it all. I have never been bias when it comes to colors. Puns intended. I used those small pretty peppers. Crispy, juicy and sweet and topping it with more stuffs only make it more delicious. You can pop it in your mouth so easily. Maybe I should call these quinoa poppers! Imagine, popping the quinoa poppers.
Ah…I am becoming cooler and cooler day by day. These are loaded with protein, veggies and healthy grains and yes, totally vegetarian too. I saw that smile btw, Tm. I now belong to the same group as the goats and the holy cows.
Once you stuff the peppers with all the yummy stuff, you top with some cheese just before baking. Anything with cheese always screams for attention, just like a lady in a little black dress. For those of you who are fans of quinoa, you are gonna love this! For those of you who have yet given quinoa a try, come on you can’t give quinoa a pass. It’s criminal. Start with this recipe. Peppers,tomatoes and cheese. It’s Holy yum and you have the trust the holy cow on that!
- 1 cup cooked quinoa (refer to notes)
- ¼ cup corn kernels
- ¼ cup canned black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 jalapeno - seeds removed and diced
- 1 small tomato - diced
- ¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
- Chopped fresh cilantro leaves
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 onion, minced
- ¼ teaspoon chili flakes/cayenne
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 15 small peppers or 6 bell peppers
- ½ cup Mozzarella cheese for topping
- Preheat the oven to 170 degrees Celsius.
- Cut the peppers into halves and remove the stems and seeds.
- If using a bell pepper, cut the top off the pepper and remove the seeds.
- In a non stick pan, drizzle 1 teaspoon of olive oil and saute onion, garlic and jalapeno. Saute for 2 minutes and add a good pinch of salt.
- Add in quinoa and cook for a further 1 minute.
- Mix in chili flakes.
- Add black beans and corn. Season it with pepper.
- Turn off the fire and let the filling cool down a bit.
- Once it cools down, mix in crumbled feta and chopped cilantro
- At this point, you can taste the filling.
- Add some salt if required.
1 cup quinoa (white or golden, red, or black)
1 tsp Olive oil (optional)
2 cups stock (vegetable or chicken)
Salt and pepper to taste
Measure out 1 cup quinoa and 2 cups stock.
Place the quinoa in a fine-mesh strainer, and rinse thoroughly with cold water.
Rub and swish the quinoa with your hand while rinsing
Rinse for at least 2 minutes under the running water. Rinsing the quinoa well would remove the natural coating that usually makes the quinoa bitter.
Drain the quinoa.
Heat a drizzle of olive oil in the saucepan over medium-high heat and add the drained quinoa.
Cook for about 2 minutes.
Add in stock and salt. Cover and cook for 15 minutes, checking every now and then.
After 15 minutes (the water would have all evaporated by now) turn off the heat and let the pot stand for 5 minutes, covered.
Fluff the quinoa gently with a fork.
Your quinoa is now done!
*1 cup of raw quinoa yields 3 cups of cooked quinoa