Quinoa, The Queen of Grains

It’s likely you have heard Quinoa mentioned in health circles, as its popularity is rapidly rising, or perhaps you have already become a fan of this little gem on your own. Either way, it is worth having this food as a pantry staple in your household and ride the wave of benefits it has to offer.

Though it is eaten as a grain, Quinoa is actually a seed which has been cherished as a superfood for thousands of years by the Incas and has finally been recognized in the US as a powerful nutritional asset.

Quinoa impressively has all 8 essential amino acids, is a good source of fiber, magnesium, and folate, has a low glycemic load, and is wheat and gluten free.

It can be eaten like rice, but one of my favorite was to eat it is as a cold salad. Here’s one of the recipes I enjoy preparing.

Balsamic Berry Quinoa Salad

Serves 4-6

  • 2 cups Organic Quinoa (cooked)
  • ½ cup chives, minced
  • ¼ cup thyme, minced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 cup sliced almonds, toasted
  • 1 cup dried cherries
  • 1 cup sheep milk feta, crumbled
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • Himalayan Sea Salt
  • Garlic Powder
  • Coriander Powder (optional)

1.  Boil Quinoa according to package directions and let cool.

2. Coat the bottom of a large sauce pan in olive oil and add minced garlic. Put on lowest heat, careful not to get the oil too hot or it will ruin the oil. (Goal is to just infuse the oil with garlic/herbs) Add the chives and thyme until aromatic and garlic slightly broken down.

3. Add cooked quinoa to the pan and stir. Keep on the burner until slightly warm and remove from heat. Add lemon juice, almonds, cherries, and feta and toss. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic and add salt, garlic powder and coriander to taste.
*Organic quinoa is cheapest at Costco if buying bulk, otherwise, Trader Joe’s seems to have the best price in town for it, as well as for the dried cherries and sheep’s feta. Happy Shopping!

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