What is Quinoa? It has been touted as a superfood, so what exactly makes it so super?
Quinoa looks like a grain, but it is actually a seed. It is often called a grain because it is used and cooked like one. Originally grown in the Andes, it has the positive points of being high in protein, iron and fibre. Quinoa is a great low GI seed, which makes it perfect for diabetics. The United Nations have even named 2013 the International Year of Quinoa because they see the exceptional nutritional value of the seed, and its potential to contribute in the fight against malnutrition and hunger around the world.
Quinoa has a mild, slightly nutty texture which is a little like couscous. It can be used in salads, cooked and shaped into patties, used as a substitute for pasta or rice, and even used for thickening up soups. Try Quinoa yourself with this tasty recipe 🙂
Roast Vegetable & Quinoa Salad with Orange Balsamic Dressing Recipe:
- 1 cup Quinoa
- 1 1/2 cups Vegetable Stock
- 2 Oranges
- 500 grams Pumpkin
- 2 Zucchinis
- 1 large Capsicum
- Fresh Parsley, roughly chopped
- 2 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
- 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 tsp Honey
Method (6 steps)
- Preheat the oven to 190 degrees Celsius / 370 degrees Fahrenheit. Line 2 baking trays with baking paper.
- Dice the pumpkin into 2cm cubes. Place it on one baking tray and drizzle over some olive oil. Roast in the oven for 30 minutes.
- Dice the zucchini and capsicum into similar sizes, place on the remaining baking tray and drizzle with olive oil. Roast in the oven for 15 minutes.
- Rinse the quinoa under running water for 1 minute to wash off the bitter coating. Place the quinoa in a small saucepan with the stock and the juice of 1 orange.Bring to the boil, then turn down the heat and let it simmer for 15 minutes with the lid on. Stir the quinoa, then set the saucepan aside to cool.
- For the dressing, combine the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, honey and the juice of the remaining orange.
- To serve, combine the quinoa and vegetables and toss lightly with the dressing. Scatter over the roughly chopped parsley.