Mexicali Quinoa

This is a variation of my Mexicali Millet recipe. Both millet and quinoa work well in this dish.

Ingredients

2 cups water
1 vegetable bouillon cube (or 1 teaspoon salt)
1 tablespoon chili powder (or to taste)
1 tablespoon taco seasoning
1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed and drained
1–2 tablespoons olive oil (or your favorite cooking oil)
½ cup chopped onions
1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
2–3 cups finely chopped greens (kale, chard, spinach, etc.)
1 cup cooked black beans
½ cup cooked corn
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

Put water, bouillon, chili powder, and taco seasoning into a medium-size saucepan. Bring to a boil. Add quinoa. Cover and return to a boil, then reduce heat to medium. Cook for approximately 20 minutes, until tender.  Set aside. Heat oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add onions and garlic. Cook for a few minutes, then add the greens. Cook until tender, adding a little water if needed, but be sure that all water is absorbed before adding to the quinoa. Fluff the quinoa and then add the veggies. Stir to combine. Toss in remaining ingredients. Serve warm or at room temperature. Serves 4.

Health Benefits of Quinoa

Although referred to as a grain, it is actually a seed from a vegetable related to Swiss chard, spinach and beets.

8 Health Benefits of Quinoa:

  1. High quality protein with the nine essential amino acids, the protein balance is similar to milk. At 16.2 to 20 percent protein, it has is more protein than rice (7.5 percent), millet (9.9 percent) or wheat (14 percent).
  2. Great source of riboflavin. Riboflavin has been shown to help reduce the frequency of attacks in migraine sufferers by improving the energy metabolism within the brain and muscle cells.
  3. Inca warriors had more stamina and quicker recovery time by eating these quinoa seeds, making it a truly ancient powerfood.
  4. Antiseptic. The saponins from quinoa are used to promote healing of skin injuries in South America.
  5. Only 172 calories per 1/4 cup dry (24 of the calories from protein and only 12 from sugars, the rest are complex carbohydrates, fiber and healthy fats). Not fattening!
  6. Gluten-free. Since it is not not related to wheat, or even a grain, it is gluten-free.
  7. Alkaline-forming. Although it is not strongly alkaline-forming, it is comparable to wild rice, amaranth, and sprouted grains.
  8. Smart Carb: It is a complex carbohydrate with a low glycemic index, so it won’t spike your blood sugar.
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