A House Divided …Over Quinoa

Some consider quinoa a food trend, but I consider it a staple. I get it, you’re sick of hearing about it and seeing it on menus, you’ve seen it all before, foodies! The thing you might be overlooking is that quinoa is both delicious and good for you – a rare combination that never goes out of style in my book. I’m not mad at the trend because it provides me with an endless supply of new recipes to try. Quinoa bites? Yes. Quinoa for breakfast? Let’s do it. Quinoa salads? E’ryday.

Quinoa

I first learned of quinoa at a vegetarian restaurant in LA when it made a sneaky appearance in an otherwise typical salad, and was described on the menu as a superfood/protein booster. I was intrigued. I Googled. I bought it next time I saw it at Trader Joe’s. I tested a few Pinterest recipes and loved them all. I’m ALL IN on this super grain.

Except when I try to serve it to the man, who doesn’t even like the word quinoa. But…but…it’s a versatile grain with high protein content! A house divided. So I’m pretty determined to prove that I’m right on this issue. Especially when we are trying to eat healthy, how (and WHY) would I eliminate quinoa from my already small repertoire?

Broc n Toms
I’ve tried serving him things without telling him what he’s eating. But I have a terrible poker face and when I say it’s “fancy cous cous” or “just some salad thing” he’s sooo not falling for it. So when the other day I was told I could make anything I wanted for dinner as long as it contained a lot of vegetables, I took the opportunity to try to win him over to team quinoa once and for all.

This recipe features roasted broccoli and is topped with creamy goat cheese. The technique of cooking the quinoa in stock gives the dish a fuller and more satisfying flavor. I have a bad (or great) habit of adding more and more goat cheese to my bowl when I eat this…what can I say, goat cheese makes me happy.

Broc Quinoa
You guys, it worked! He liked it. Must have been the goat cheese.

I found the original recipe on Design Sponge. (Only now in re-reading it do I realize it’s from the creator of What’s Gaby Cooking, which I’m a big fan of as well). I’ve made a couple modifications, such as using broccoli instead of broccolini and roasting the tomatoes, so I’ll include my “Cook it Pretty way” below. Maybe it will win you over too!

Roasted Broccoli & Quinoa With Goat Cheese

Broc Quinoa Goat
1 bunch broccoli
Olive oil
Juice of one lemon
Red pepper flakes to taste
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup quinoa (mix white and red quinoa)
2 cups chicken (or vegetable) stock
Crumbled goat cheese to taste
10 or so cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Bring quinoa and stock to a boil on the stove top. Once boiling, reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook until all the liquid has been absorbed, about 15 minutes.

Cut the broccoli into bite-sized pieces.

Place broccoli on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.

Roast for 10 minutes, then remove the pan from the oven to add tomatoes. Return pan to oven and continue roasting another 5 minutes.

Combine the cooked quinoa and roasted broccoli and tomatoes in a bowl, topping with goat cheese. Serve warm, and keep that goat cheese handy!

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