quinoa for breakfast

I’m always surprised by how much feedback I get asking about my food posts and cooking — so here’s some more.  I’ve gotten really into roasting vegetables lately, because it’s probably the healthiest and easiest damn thing possible — whatever vegetables are fresh at the market (carrots and cauliflower roast particularly well, as do red onions, peppers, and anything squash or zucchini-like), a drizzle of olive oil, and some spices (salt and pepper is fine, though curry, masala, herbs de provence, and italian seasonings also are great for specific flavors), stir that all up in a Pyrex baking dish and pop it in the oven at 375 for an hour… in the last ten minutes or so, you can add in some beans (or something sweet like raisins and nuts for a Moroccan tagine-style dish.) It’s incredibly simple, ridiculous how tasty and awesome it comes out, and it takes about as long as it takes to chop a carrot to prepare.

Sunday night’s dinner:  a mix of carrots, cauliflower, zucchini, red onions, and butternut squash, roasted with a bit of curry and served over quinoa.

Cara-Mia asked me about quinoa — it’s a grain, but I find it easier to cook than rice (which I eternally burn and think is bland anyhow), and it has much higher protein + fiber content than other grains, and I like the nuttier flavor and slightly crunchy texture. (Never gets mushy like other grains, unless you seriously overcook it.)

Whenever I make grains I add the oil/salt/etc afterwards to taste rather than cooking with it, because I like to save the leftovers (if there are any) for breakfast the next morning — I reheat them just a bit more with some cinnamon, vanilla, fresh berries, and a bit of heavy cream (okay, seriously, two teaspons of heavy cream is like thirty calories added that make basically anything amazing, you are missing out if you don’t have this in your fridge.)  

Any grain works with this really, but I find quinoa (and even couscous) are great oatmeal substitutes and work really well as hot whole-grain cereals as well.

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