I absolutely LOVE quinoa. It comes in different forms: pasta and also the grain itself (and I am sure there are others, but these are the only two that come to mind right now). I am just addressing the actual grain itself. This is such a fabulous little morsel of goodness. It has a very distinct flavor all it’s own, yet it also mixes so wonderfully with whatever you may eat it with, or by itself of course. It is strong, yet light. I am going to address my two ways of cooking quinoa.
1. Day 1: Regardless of your cooking method, you need to start by soaking the grains overnight. Some may groan “Nikki, we already do so much in the kitchen and you always want me to do these overnight or 3 day processes!” Yes, yes I do. In reality it takes almost NO time to prepare. The biggest challenge is remembering. Perhaps we need to plan ahead? Ha ha. Ok, anyway…here is how I soak.
First of all, rinse and drain 1 cup of quinoa (a mesh colander works best). Put in a nice sized pot. Cover the one cup of quinoa with 2 cups of filtered water. Add 1 tablespoon of Apple Cider Vinegar and stir. Put the lid on it and leave it over night.
2. Day 2: Rinse well! Put back in the pot.
Option 1: Add 1 and 1/2 cups water. Add 1/2 Tablespoon olive oil or Coconut Oil plus salt to taste (start with 1/2 teaspoon). Bring to boil, cover, reduce to simmer for 20-25 minutes or until water is absorbed.
Option 2: Add 4 cups of water (clearly way to much, we are cooking this like pasta people). Cook on medium high for 20-25 minutes or until it is to your perfect consistency. Feel free to taste as you go to find the perfect “al dente” cooking time for you!
Option 3: Once soaked, put into any soup or dish you would typically add rice, noodles, or potatoes to as a fresh change! They can cook right along with everything else!
3. Later on Day 2: Why did I cook this in the am? Well because I almost exclusively use it as an addition to another meal. Throw it in the fridge and break it out as an addition to your favorite already cooked soup, salad, or reheat as a side (Simply throw it in the pan with a little chicken stock to flavor it up!)
How do you like your quinoa?