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If you haven’t tried quinoa yet (pronounced KEEN-WAH) this is the dish to start.  You won’t believe how much flavor it contains with few ingredients. Easy to prepare in one pan and can be made ahead.  Definitely going on my Thanksgiving menu this year, guarantee there won’t be any leftovers. 

We had roasted turkey breasts with the quinoa a few nights ago, and leftovers last night.  All the tastes complemented each other SO well.  I seasoned the turkey breasts with dried rosemary, thyme, garlic powder, salt and pepper; then quickly pan seared the outsides and finished baking in the oven, covered, with leftover vegetable broth (to keep moist).   Wow, it was delicious, divine, out of this world, and soooooo healthy.

Great side dish or main vegetarian course served warm, cold or room temperature.  Quinoa lover or not, you’ll be hooked after this one, trust me.

KALE, BUTTERNUT SQUASH & DRIED CRANBERRY QUINOA

serves 6-8

  • 1 large RED ONION, diced
  • 2 tsp OLIVE OIL, EXTRA VIRGIN
  • SEA SALT AND PEPPER TO TASTE
  • 2 cups BUTTERNUT SQUASH or SWEET POTATO, cut into small cubes
  • 4 cloves GARLIC, minced
  • 1 cup QUINOA, DRY, rinsed & drained
  • 1/2 cup WHITE WINE (like Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc)
  • 1 1/2 cup VEGETABLE BROTH, LOW SODIUM
  • 2 cups FRESH KALE, chopped fine (organic if possible)
  • 3/4 cup DRIED CRANBERRIES
  • 2 tsp RED WINE VINEGAR

GLUTEN-FREE OPTION: Make sure vegetable broth, vinegar and wine are GF.

1. In a large skillet (use one with a fitted lid for step 2), over medium to medium-high heat, sauté diced onion and butternut squash in olive oil, sprinkled with salt and pepper until caramelized and cooked through; about 15-20 minutes. The last few minutes add garlic and stir frequently not to burn. Set aside in a glass bowl.

this is called too lazy to chop your own squash – it happens to us all

2. Using the same skillet (without cleaning) toast rinsed and drained quinoa for about 60 seconds; stirring constantly. Deglaze the pan with white wine and cook for about 1-2 minutes to reduce wine slightly. Add vegetable broth, cover and bring to a boil.

Cook quinoa for 15-20 minutes, stir and turn heat to low. Continue cooking, covered, until all liquid is absorbed, about 10 additional minutes. Stir in chopped kale with a fork while warm.

3. Toss quinoa kale with butternut squash mixture, dried cranberries and red wine vinegar.  Season with additional salt and pepper if needed.  Serving size: about 1 cup as 8 servings.

VARIATIONS: Add chopped green apple or toasted pecans.

NUTRITION INFO PER SERVING (as 8 servings): 150 calories, 2.5g fat, 29g carb, 3g fiber, 9g sugar, 4g protein

FRIDAY NUTRITION FUNNY

Okay, so I picked two for this week because I couldn’t decide.  Hesitated on the second one, but it was too funny to leave out.  Some of you might lower your standards of me, but hopefully it made you laugh.

Image Source Page: http://healthskills.wordpress.com/2008/06/27/friday-funny-4/

Image Source Page: http://vi.sualize.us/funnies_humor_witty_nutrition_manwoman_picture_vpbx.html

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