Thursday, August 29, 2013

quinoa breakfast cereal

I've been experimenting with this and have found a few different ways to make it. I find I generally prefer red quinoa to the plain stuff, too, because it seems to hold its texture better when you let it sit a few days.

Blueberry quinoa: Heat 1c frozen blueberries with a little bit of maple syrup, agave, or water until it's boiling. Remove from heat and stir in 2c cooked quinoa, plus a generous splash of something creamy -- milk or half and half. Serve with plain yogurt and chopped nuts on top, plus a drizzle of something sweet if desired.

Coconut quinoa: Cook quinoa with coconut milk instead of water (using the same proportions). Sprinkle with that really good flaked coconut, nuts, chopped fruit, etc.

Quinoa with nut butter: Pretty much what it sounds like. You can use the coconut-milk-cooked stuff for some creaminess, or stir in a little milk too. Sliced banana on top.

I also want to try this breakfast grain salad but haven't yet. Mm, grains.

Friday, August 16, 2013

salmon cakes with lemon yogurt sauce

I was looking for a way to use up some leftover salmon, and this fit the bill. I also did it with some of the precooked packaged salmon from Trader Joe's, and it worked well that time too.

Cakes:
  • 1 pound skinless salmon fillet, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, or one package of TJ's cooked salmon
  • 1/4 c panko [recipe calls for 2 (6-inch) pita rounds or 3 slices firm white sandwich bread, torn into small pieces]
  • 1/4 cup + a little more greek yogurt [recipe calls for mayo]
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • good shake of Old Bay
  • 1 t grated lemon zest
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Sauce:
  • 1 t grated lemon zest
  • chopped dill [optional, but a good idea]
  • 3/4 cup plain yogurt [recipe called for whole-milk; I used 2% Greek]
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Mix cake ingredients together & form small-ish patties (mine made 8).

Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers. 

Cook salmon cakes, turning over once, until golden and just cooked through, 6 to 7 minutes total. 

Stir together the sauce & serve. Makes good leftovers, too.

crustless broccoli quiche

Based on this recipe.
  • 2 heads or 1 package (10 oz.) frozen broccoli florets
  • several scallions, white and green parts chopped 
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half (can use fat-free)
  • salt & pepper
  • dash of red pepper & nutmeg 
  • 3/4 c (3 oz.) shredded cheese (I used a mixture of cheddar & gruyere) 
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray the pie dish.

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add broccoli; cook 1 minute. Drain well; transfer to a cutting board, and blot dry with paper towels. Chop coarsely.

In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, half-and-half, and spices. Stir in broccoli, scallions and cheese.

Bake until golden brown, 35 to 40 minutes.

Monday, August 05, 2013

quinoa salad with orange, fennel, and chicken

YUM. I never would have put this combination together if I hadn't been perusing this cookbook, trying to figure out more things to do with quinoa.

The original recipe calls for pancetta, which I left out but which would probably be delicious. It also wanted you to cook the fennel and I have no idea why, because it adds nice crunchiness when it's raw. And there was also some nonsense about putting a lemon in the fennel water that seemed entirely unnecessary.

(All that said, I really like this cookbook and am using it more than any other these days, and you can get it on Amazon right now for one (1) cent. Just one penny! Plus shipping, but still! You should buy it.)

Also, I just bought some red quinoa at TJ's, and I think it tasted the same but looked prettier than regular quinoa.

Vinaigrette:

3 T frozen orange juice concentrate
2 T red wine vinegar
1 T balsamic vinegar
3 T olive oil
1+ T spicy mustard
salt and pepper to taste

Salad:

3+ c cooked quinoa
1 bulb fennel, chopped into bits
2 oranges or tangerines, 1 zested, both peeled and chopped into bits
3 scallions, diced
about 2 chicken breasts, diced (would be a great use for leftovers, or you can be lazy like me and buy the TJ's delicious balsamic-marinated chicken, or you can be virtuous and cook it yourself)

Mix up the vinaigrette and set aside. Combine everything and mix well, then pour the vinaigrette over it. Taste to make sure you have enough salt and pepper. Sprinkle with feta or goat cheese if you'd like (we liked) and eat.