Quinoa and Black Beans

From time to time, we try to be healthy.  We are not heading to the extreme though, like going all organic or natural stuff.  It takes too much time and effort to be that dedicated, plus, who knows if those are all just marketing hypes?  I am just way too lazy to figure if everything is natural and organic – and you really need to do your homework if you want all “Natural” or “Organic.”

One of my questions is, for all natural beef…… did the cattle eat grass or grain, produced naturally?  How about those vaccinations and supplements they need?  Does all natural beef mean, no additional vaccination or supplement?  How about the organic fruits?  Did they receive natural compost?  Did they receive any fertilizer?  I guess, I don’t know if anything can be completely all natural.  I myself, has a position of, if my parents can live until their 80s and still kicking without going all natural, then I don’t have an urgency to go to the extreme.

Anyway, what got me going is this grain, or, grain like.  Quinoa.  It is pronounced “keen-wah” or, the harder one, “kee-noh-uh.”  It is a strange word to me, and it almost twisted my tongue trying to say it the second pronunciation.  As a result though, a word such is so strange from my tongue, stuck to my brain!  I can say it both ways without hesitation now.

Quinoa, according to Wikipedia, is actually little tiny seed of flowering plant called Goosefoot.  Supposedly, the Incas starting consuming these to buffed up their warriors.  Somehow they knew that these little tiny things are full of good stuff and make them strong.

As usual, I found out about Quinoa from food blogs.  It took me awhile though, to get the Quinoa, and then cook it.  Maybe a year time span.. Ha ha..  It is my senile-itis.  So, when I do remember about Quinoa, I went online and found a recipe from allrecipes which is quite simple and no exotic ingredients.  Pretty much it’s stuff that you have in your own pantry, or, my pantry in this case.

Quinoa, onion, garlic, chicken broth, olive oil, cumin, cayenne, salt and pepper, frozen corn, black beans, and cilantro.  Other than the vegetable broth and the Quinoa, I have the rest of the ingredients in my pantry or refrigerator.  Yes, I like to keep cilantro in my fridge, since you just never know it.  Plus it is pretty cheap, only fifty cents a bunch.

 
An up close of Quinoa… it is round, with maybe half a millimeter thickness.  It is basically very cute things.  I know, I have this fondness toward anything that is round.. Be that a full moon, or a little tiny seed.

 

First I heat the oil in a medium size frying pan…

 

Added the chopped onion…


 

Garlic…

 

Quinoa…

 

Chicken broth…

 

Added all of the spices, cumin, cayenne, salt and pepper…

 

Let it come to a boil and then close the pan tight with a lid.  Reduce the heat to let it simmer for about 20 minutes.

 

After 20 minutes, most of the broth was absorbed by those tiny seeds.

 

Then I added the corn…

 

Black beans…

 

Chopped cilantro…

 

Mixed them all up…

 

And voila!  Ready!

 

The tiny seeds turned translucent, and I could see a solid white ring that often came off the seed itself.

 

We ate it as a side with Planked Chicken, and it was a balanced meal.  The Quinoa was light, and it basically absorbed whatever seasoning you put in it.  So you could easily adjust and throw in anything you like to make your palate happy.  So, the next time you go to the grocery store and saw this bag of Quinoa, grab it, and experiment with it.  Until my next post!

Print recipe here.

Quinoa and Black Beans
Recipe modified from 3Lioncubs

Ingredients
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
3/4 cup uncooked quinoa
1½  cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup frozen corn kernels
2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
½  cup chopped fresh cilantro

Preparation:

Heat olive oil in a medium frying/saute pan.  Saute onion until it turns translucent.  Add Quinoa,  chicken broth and the spices.  Stir to mix it, and let it come to a boil.  Cover, reduce the heat, simmer for twenty minutes.  Add the corn, black beans, and chopped cilantro.  Stir to mix, and serve.

 

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