Monday, February 18, 2013

Quinoa Porridge

Yummm! I have a new love.  This porridge.  I went to Philadelphia this weekend to visit my sister and we went out to brunch on Sunday morning before I left.  After days of heavy eating, I felt like something light and ordered the quinoa porridge, figuring it would be warm and satisfying and oatmeal-esque.  It was, and it was delicious.  I came home and browsed recipes last night (don't all people look at quinoa porridge recipes at night??) and made it for breakfast this morning.  It is my new favorite thing.   It is easy -- done in 20 minutes -- and  I made extra which can easily be rewarmed for breakfast before work this week. 

Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) is grain-like but is actually a seed and has a wonderful texture and, unlike oatmeal, it keeps you from getting hungry because it is high in protein.  It is also high in amino acids,  magnesium and iron and is a source of calcium.  How cool is quinoa?!  Basically, it is really good stuff. 

You can vary this recipe easily.  The liquid to solid ratio for quinoa is 2:1 and you can use milk, water, or a combination.  Or to make vegan/lactose free, use a milk substitute such as soy milk, almond milk, etc.  I used 1/2 water and 1/2 milk, topping off the milk with a bit of heavy cream.  You can use any combination of dried fruits, spices, nuts, or fresh fruits.  Like oatmeal, the fun is in the toppings!

Quinoa Porridge
(4 large servings)

4 cups liquid (milk, water, or 1/2 and 1/2)
2 cups quinoa 
2 Tbs. maple syrup
1 Tbs. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. salt
1/3 cup dried fruit (such as raisins,  golden raisins, apricots, currants, dates)

Optional Toppings:

toasted sliced almonds (or pecans)
fresh fruit (such as blueberries, bananas, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries)
warm jam or berry compote
seeds (try pumpkin or sunflower seeds)


In a saucepan, warm milk and/or water over medium heat until simmering.  Add quinoa and bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer for about 10 minutes.  Add remaining ingredients, stir, and let simmer another 5 to 10 minutes, until most of the liquid is absorbed or texture is to your liking.  Serve with toppings of your choice.  Enjoy!


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