Monday, December 29, 2014

Grain of the Week - 50, 51 & 52 - White Quinoa

I started the 'Grain of the Week' project Week 1 of this and even I am surprised it has survived for 52 weeks albeit a few grains sharing multi-weeks like this one today. The project has helped me in discovering new grains that I have never used before and learned about a quite a few new ones. Thanks also to readers who shared the grains that they have come across and liked.

The project started with Red Quinoa and fittingly comes to an end with White Quinoa. Quinoa as we all know is an ancient grain of the Andean region of Chile, Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador and Columbia, closely related to the Amaranth grain. Domesticated about 5000 years ago it has suddenly become a super grain for the rest of the world. Wiki. Thanks to the Andean people who have preserved it for future generations.

2013 was declared as the 'International Year of Quinoa' by the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations. Rightfully so 2013 was the year when the Quinoa popularity was at its peak.

Quinoa is related to the Chard, Beets and Spinach family and is more of a seed than grain.

Quinoa is rich in protein making it a perfect for vegetarians and vegans who want up the intake of protein. It is also gluten free and has a low glycemic index making it a good source of carbohydrate for those trying to control blood sugar. It is also rich in minerals like Potassium, Magnesium, Zinc and Iron. It is also rich in antioxidants, those chemicals which are essential for fighting disease and aging.

Quinoa needs to be soaked and washed to remove the outer coating which is bitter. I rinse it in several changes of water after soaking for about 20 minutes or so.

Quinoa can be cooked and eaten like rice, used in salads or to make dosai and idli. Listed are some recipes that I have tried with Quinoa.
  1. How to cook Quinoa?
  2. Quinoa Puliyodarai - Tamarind Spiced Quinoa
  3. Quinoa Patties or Cutlets with green chilies and Cheese
  4. Red Quinoa Idly - Steamed Quinoa Cakes
  5. Quinoa Pudding with dried fruits and nuts

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1 comment:

  1. Happy New Year ISG! I hope 2015 is wonderful to you and your family. Just thought I'd let you know I'm spending NY Eve making your chicken biryani (samba rice style).

    All the best!


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