Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Quinoa and Soyrizo

Last year, during my vegan week, I tried quinoa for the first time. Since then I've made it several times, always stuffed inside a pepper. This was the first time that I reversed it and stuffed the pepper inside the quinoa. After the success of the Soyrizo Pizza,

I thought that it would be a good addition to the dish. This time, I also used a trio of different varieties of quinoa. If you aren't familiar with the food, technically it is the starchy seed/fruit of an herb. It can be prepared as you would any other starch. If you are looking for a change of pace, you can substitute rice with quinoa. It has been dubbed a "super crop" by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, owing to its high nutritional content and status as a complete protein, containing all nine essential amino acids 1. For this dish, I also decided to make a vegetable stock from scratch. I cooked down carrots, celery, onion, garlic and turnips for several hours to get the stock. Once this was done, I added a cup of quinoa to two cups of stock. It only took about fifteen minutes before it has soaked up all of the stock and was fluffy and ready to add some fresh cut bell peppers and the Soyrizo. The dish was amazing. I was surprised how flavorful it was and while the Soyrizo visually got lost in the mix, its taste was present in every bite. Leigha and I both agreed that as good as this dish was, it would have been better suited as a side dish. I think that it would go well with anything grilled, whether it was chicken, pork or a steak.

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