Quinoa or quinoa is an ideal dish: it cooks quickly, it has no gluten, it has a mild flavor that lends itself to infinite variations and is rich in essential nutrients such as fiber and potassium. It is not technically a grain of cereal but the seed of a plant native to South America. It contains complete proteins, making it a healthy and low-cost substitute for animal proteins. Quinoa is usually prepared in water but chicken broth can be used to give it more flavor. Choose broth low in sodium or no sodium to keep your sodium intake under control.
Put the quinoa in the colander over the sink. Use cold running water to rinse it for about two minutes, rubbing and sifting the seeds to make sure they are all washed thoroughly. Let it drain.
Heat a pot over medium high heat. Add about 1 tablespoon of olive oil or canola for each cup of quinoa and heat it. Toast the quinoa in the oil, stirring frequently with a spatula or wooden spoon until it is golden brown, about six to eight minutes.
Pour the chicken broth into the pot, 2 cups of broth for every 1 cup of quinoa. Bring to a boil.
Cover the pot and lower the heat to a minimum. Cook for 15 minutes without stirring.
Remove the pot from the heat and let it sit covered for about five minutes.
Separate the seeds gently with a fork before serving.
Estimate that a cup of dried quinoa will produce 3 cups of cooked quinoa.
If you are vegetarian or vegan, substitute chicken stock for vegetable broth.
Try adding sautéed vegetables, herbs or spices to the quinoa while it is cooking.
You can prepare it in a rice cooker. Use the same amount of quinoa as a broth as you would on the stove.
Experiment with red or black quinoa varieties, which are rich in the phytochemical antioxidants known as anthocyanins.
Do not skip the rinsing step or you can end up with a marinated quinoa. Quinoa seeds are covered with saponin, a natural compound that must be washed thoroughly to achieve better results.