October 9, 2013 | 9:00 am
Posted by Elana Horwich
The Basics of Quinoa
I make the best quinoa in town, and considering I live in the capital of quinoa, Los Angeles, this is quite an accomplishment.
My tricks are:
How to cook the quinoa:
Measure your quinoa in a mug, glass or measuring cup. You will need twice the amount of water so fill up whatever container you used for the dry quinoa twice. Put it all in your rice cooker, turn it on and forgettaaboutit! Or follow stovetop instructions.
Once the quinoa is done, put it in a mixing bowl and let rest for 5-10 minutes. Then create the flavor base.
Elana’s Flavor Base:
These measurements are guidelines! The only way to be sure it’s perfect is to taste and adjust.
For 1 cup uncooked quinoa:
First add the olive oil and salt and stir to coat grains. Next add the soy sauce or tamari, Braggs and Coconut Aminos.
Taste and Adjust:
The Art of Garnishing Quinoa
Here are the tricks for garnishing quinoa:
Here are some of my favorite add-ins for quinoa. Use what you have in the house to throw together a delicious quinoa dish.
(For 1 cup uncooked quinoa)
Once the quinoa is dressed with its flavor base, add your garnishing ingredients. It is possible your add-ins will dull the pizazz of the quinoa at first, so TASTE the quinoa after and add to the flavor base if needed.
How to Spruce Up Leftover Quinoa:
I like to eat quinoa as soon as it is done, but if I let it sit for a few hours or put the leftovers in the fridge, the flavor can get dull. Add a drizzle of olive oil, a pinch of salt and an extra squeeze of fresh lemon.
Elana’s Favorite Go-To Quinoa Throw-Togethers:
Quinoa Salad with Toasted Pine Nuts and Fresh Mint
Basically what I do at home when I have nothing else in the house to eat.
The Jen Stein Simms Quinoa Salad
At the beginning of my cooking career I cooked for my friend Jen and her husband for a short stint. Jen never stopped talking about the quinoa and forced me to put the exact recipe in a cooking class so she could come.
The Smarty Quinoa
I made this one night for a panel discussion event for SMARTY, a totally inspiring entrepreneurial women’s group that I am a member of. I cooked voluntarily to promote Meal and a Spiel. It was such a hit, Amy Swift, the founder, asked me to come back regularly and offered to pay for it. That is some good quinoa!
Want to take cooking classes with Elana in Los Angeles? Go to mealandaspiel.com.
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