The whole thing turned me off—the show, the preachy attitude… and her quinoa. But since I’m cutting back on meat these days, quinoa’s PR claim as “full protein” intrigued me. I did a quick google, and here’s what I found:
“The protein in quinoa is considered to be a complete protein due to the presence of all 8 essential amino acids. Some types of wheat come close to matching quinoa’s protein content, but grains such as barley, corn, and rice generally have less than half the protein of quinoa. Quinoa is 12% to 18% protein and four ounces a day (about 1/2-cup) will provide a child’s protein needs for one day.”
Having said that, people who have never tried quinoa will inevitably think: “Sure, it’s healthy but it must taste like cardboard and old shoe.” Can’t blame you. It seems like one of those too-good-to-be-true foods that you manage to choke down only by envisioning all the good things it’s doing to your body. But folks, I’m here to tell you—quinoa is delicious.
When I told my Aunt about my new love, she sent me a recipe for a Mexican quinoa salad. It sounded delicious, but I thought I could make it better with a few changes. I added a red pepper; I wanted some colour in there—as well as a non-starch vegetable. I also used water instead of chicken broth. With bland and tasteless grains like rice, chicken broth really adds much-needed flavour. (Though I’ve read some who say chicken broth masks the natural nutty flavors of quinoa.) I also added cilantro, because I think cilantro should be added to any dish with the word “Mexican” in it, and I upped the chili powder as I’m partial to a spicy dish.
What’s the Spanish word for “Winner”? This tastes amazing, it’s filling and by the way—I have lunch for the next two days.