Thursday, February 26, 2009

Apple Cinnamon Quinoa

The love of my life, quinoa, is not a savory only ingredient! I think I remember my brother Justin mentioning that it could be cooked up and eaten just like oatmeal/hot cereal. Huh...I'm game! So I poked around the interwebs and pulled from a few sources to make this:

2c. rinsed quinoa
4c water
1 peeled, diced apple (just peel with a potato peeler, and type of apple is up to you. I usually use Granny Smith)
2 teas cinnamon
handfull of raisins

Combine the water and quinoa, bring to a boil then cover and simmer. When water level meets quinoa level (ie: it's about half way done), throw in the apples and raisins so that they cook and soften and sweeten up the quinoa. I like my raisins all plump and juicy, but if you want them more chewy then just add them in right before you eat it. When the water is all absorbed, mixed in the cinnamon and voila! Simple as that. Just like any hot cereal, feel free to add a little brown sugar/syrup/whatever and milk if you want. It's really up to you. I like a ton of apple, so I usually throw in a bit extra of that, too.

Quinoa. Again.

This is kind of a cop-out, since I've pretty much made this before but, since I haven't cooked anything in approximately forever, I'm writing about it anyways. Deal. It is, however, the first time that I've used ground meat with quinoa, so it's sorta newish! It's my 'crap I wanna make dinner but don't want to put ANY effort into figuring out what to make or actually making it' meal.

1 part quinoa to 2 parts chicken stock (it's been a little squishy lately, so maybe a smidge less than 2 parts). I used almost 2 cups of dry quinoa, which might have been a little too much for the amount of meat and veggies that I had.

While that's simmering, covered, I started the meat and veggies.

-splash of water
-1lb (I think. 1 package, anyways) of ground pork (because it was the cheapest and well, ground meat is ground meat to me. My palette is sophisticated like that)
-a sprinkle of Fagundes (sp?)meat seasoning (that stuff is the SHIZ! Especially rubbed on a steak. Drool...I'll put it on pretty much anything)

Saute the meat up over med-ish heat until it's not pink and transfer it onto a plate/bowl with a slatted spoon to drain the liquid. Try not to continuously pick at it and end up eating half of it off the plate because ground meat with seasoning tastes like a dream come true. Oops.

Leaving a little of the liquid behind, toss in your veggies and cook those suckers up over med-high heat until soft-ish. This time I had green beans, mixed potatoes (which I bought at the farmer's market. I love the purple ones. Because they're pretty.), and yellow squash. Oh-I put the potatoes in first for a few minutes because they take longer to cook than the other veggies. I'm a dumbass and sprinkled more seasoning on the veggies, because I'm obsessed with it. Let me tell you something- chicken stock (or any stock)+salty seasoning on meat AND veggies=OMG I NEED WATER. Way too much salty. Oops. It was still super tasty though, and made enough for probably about 4-6 people. (read: I'll be eating leftovers every meal for a week)

Side note: I go to the farmer's market every Sunday to load up on produce, but didn't have any veggies other than the potatoes on hand because I went all apple and orange crazy at the market last week. I went to Whole Foods, the only place with decent organic veggies, prepared to get raped by their outrageous prices (I've paid $4 there on accident for ONE red pepper before. Wtf.). For once, they weren't bad though! I try to stick to the farmer's market because I like knowing that it's fresh and local, but Whole Foods is a decent fall-back. Sometimes.