All you want to know about Quinoa

all you want to know about Quinoa

What is quinoa?

How do you cook Quinoa. The high-protein, gluten-free food. And how do you pronounce it?

It’s high in protein, gluten-free and incredibly versatile. But what exactly is quinoa, why should you eat it, and how do you cook it?
Even if you have never eaten it, it’s very likely that you’ll have come across quinoa in supermarket or on a restaurant menu. A healthy substitute for rice or couscous, it’s become popular enough to warrant the UN naming 2013 ‘International Quinoa Year’.
 
So, what exactly is quinoa, why is it good for you, and what can you do with it?

 

What exactly is quinoa and how do you pronounce it?

Pronounced ‘keen-wah’, the part that we eat is

the seeds from the flowering plant chenopodium quinoa, which originated in the Andean regions of South America and has been farmed for food for at least three millennia.

Although it looks similar, and is used as a substitute for, rice and couscous, it’s actually a closer relation of beetroot, chard and spinach. Unprocessed quinoa seeds are naturally bitter, which has the benefit of deterring birds from eating them while they are growing.

Why is quinoa considered healthy?

Firstly, it is a ‘complete protein’, containing all nine amino acids, and has twice the protein content of rice or barley. Additionally, it’s gluten and cholesterol-free, and is a source of calcium, manganese, dietary fiber, iron, zinc and magnesium. It’s also very easy to digest.

How do I cook quinoa?

It can be prepared much like rice. It might need soaking first. Check instructions on the packet. Then boil two cups of water for every cup of the seeds, and simmer for 10-15 minutes. As the seeds cook, they open up and release small white curls of grain. Remove from the heat and allow to stand for 4 minutes. Then fluff up with a fork.
 

How is quinoa eaten?

After cooking, quinoa should be fluffy but still have a slight ‘crunch’ to it. It has a mildly nutty flavor. It can be used as a substitute cereal. In a salad mixed with leaves or vegetables. As a side dish seasoned with salt, pepper and butter or oil. Or as a rice-like accompaniment to stews, stir-fries or curries. It can also be utilized in the making of vegetarian burgers. Or even as a baking grain to make bread or muffins.

Foodsecurity Quinoa genome accelerates solutions

Quinoa

Research.

An international team of scientists, including quinoa breeding experts from Wageningen University & Research, published the complete DNA sequence of quinoa. Quinoa is the food crop that is conquering the world (Nature magazine on 8 February 2017). Quinoa is rich in essential amino acids and nutritional fibres. It does not contain gluten. The crop is important to farmers as it provides a reasonable yield. Even on poor soils. The new knowledge about quinoa DNA is already being used by breeders who are developing quinoa varieties. These grow well in saline soil and still meet the taste requirements of consumers.

DNA
The scientists determined the sequence of the DNA-building blocks of the entire quinoa genome. The total length of the DNA, the ‘genome’, consists over a little over 1.3 billion DNA building blocks (the nucleotides A, C, G or T), divided over 18 chromosomes. Printed on paper this would add up to over 500,000 pages of text.

To map the DNA building blocks, the scientists used a smart combination of various DNA sequencing techniques. While this enabled them to put together ever-larger DNA segments in the computer from the huge amount of DNA information available, it did not lead to the 18 segments which represent the 18 chromosomes. The scientists therefore applied genetic maps that were made by crossbreeding plants to determine how molecular markers were inherited by the offspring. This allowed them to place most of the DNA on 18 large DNA-strains, representing the quinoa chromosomes.

Robert van Loo, expert in quinoa breeding at Wageningen University & Research. He says it was this combination that allowed the scientists to clearly map the DNA. “We were able to determine the location on the chromosome of no less than 85% of the DNA-sequence. This is a major benefit for plant breeders.”

 
Provided by: Wageningen University search and more info website
search and more info

Cooking instructions for Quinoa

Quinoa is a brilliant, tasty sub grain, packed with both protein and fibre – and it’s also gluten-free.

Dress simply while still hot with lime or lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil and a little sea salt and black pepper, and you’ve got the foundations for a delicious meal. Nutty and fluffy, it’s a great alternative to rice, served with chicken or fish, or livened up with simple, fresh ingredients to make a satisfying salad.

But with so many different grains out there, each with their own cooking method, it can be confusing to know how to cook each one properly for ultimate flavor and texture. Never fear, we’ve got quinoa covered! Follow our easy step-by-step guide below, then check out this quinoa, feta & broad bean salad recipe to turn it into a delicious lunch.

PERFECT QUINOA STEP BY STEP

Rinse the quinoa under cold running water to remove its bitter flavour
How_to_cook_quinoa_14415_preview

Tip into a pan and add double the amount of salted water
How_to_cook_quinoa_14425_preview

Place over a medium heat and bring to the boil
How_to_cook_quinoa_14431_preview

Reduce to a simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, or until tender and the liquid is absorbed
How_to_cook_quinoa_14433_preview

Fluff it up with a fork, then pimp it
How_to_cook_quinoa_14435_preview
You might have some leftovers?  …… Cold, leftover quinoa is a brilliant filler in nut roasts or veggie burgers, too.

Quinoa Breakfast – a good start of your day.

delicious-breakfast-quinoaA quinoa breakfast gets you going.
Hands-on time ,  10 minutes
Total time , 22 minutes
Yield Serves , 4
Ingredients to use
  • 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 3/4 cup light coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup flaked unsweetened coconut
  • 1 cup sliced strawberries
  • 1 cup sliced banana
Nutrition Information for this meal
  • calories 178
  • fat 5.5 g
  • satfat 3.8 g
  • monofat 0.4 g
  • polyfat 0.8 g
  • protein 4.4 g
  • carbohydrate 30.4 g
  • fiber 3.7 g
  • cholesterol 0.0 mg
  • iron 1.6 mg
  • sodium 89 mg
  • calcium 22 mg
How to Make this breakfast
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°.

  2. Place the quinoa in a fine sieve and place the sieve in a large bowl. Then cover the quinoa with water. Use your hands and rub the grains together for 30 seconds. Then rinse and drain the quinoa. Repeat this procedure twice. Drain the quinoa well and combine it with the coconut milk, 2 tablespoons of water, brown sugar and salt in a medium saucepan and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed, while stirring occasionally. Stir the mixture constantly during the last 2 minutes of cooking.

  3. While quinoa cooks, spread flaked coconut in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake at 400° for 5 minutes or until golden brown. Cool slightly.

  4. Place about 1/2 cup quinoa mixture in each of 4 bowls. Top each serving with 1/4 cup strawberry slices, 1/4 cup banana slices, and 1 tablespoon toasted coconut. Serve it warm.

    Like most whole grains, quinoa is surprisingly filling, but if you need more for breakfast, serve with an egg on the side.

    We wish you a bon appetit and an awesome day !

By Christine Burns Rudalevige,
For more Quinoa recipes click here.

Colorful Quinoa Salad Recipe

For this colorful Quinoa salad recipe,
is the TOTAL TIME:

Prep: 30 min. + cooling

and the YIELD: 8 servings.

ingredients

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 2 cups fresh baby spinach, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 medium cucumber, seeded and chopped
  • 1 medium sweet orange pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium sweet yellow pepper, chopped
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • DRESSING:
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 teaspoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon grated lime peel
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh gingerroot
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions

In a large saucepan, bring water to a boil. Add quinoa. Reduce heat; simmer, covered, 12-15 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat; fluff with a fork. Transfer to a large bowl; cool completely. Stir spinach, tomatoes, cucumber, peppers and green onions into quinoa. In a small bowl, whisk dressing ingredients until blended. Drizzle over quinoa mixture; toss to coat. Refrigerate until serving.

    Nutritional Facts

    3/4 cup: 143 calories, 5g fat (1g saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 88mg sodium, 23g carbohydrate (6g sugars, 3g fiber), 4g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 1 starch, 1 vegetable, 1 fat.

    Enjoy your tasteful Quinoa Salad.

    http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/colorful-quinoa-salad