For the Love of Quinoa

If you’ve had a conversation with me in the past several months quinoa has probably come up in conversation.  It seems to have invaded my life, but in a good way.  The way I talk about it most people would think I’ve been eating this superfood for ages. I’ll let you in on a little secret, it hasn’t even been a year. Gasp! Shocking, I know. I’ve  heard about it for awhile now and all the wonderful benefits it provides are astonishing. This little seed is a complete protein, high in minerals, rich in antioxidants, high in fiber,  gluten free, low in cholesterol and sodium, with many other remarkable benefits. So why did I stay away so long? In all honesty the mystery seed scared me. I wasn’t sure I was ready for its nutty flavor, cooking it scared me and I was clueless as to what recipe to use it in. Let’s just say I’ve conquered my fears and prepare this delight an average of three times per week. For example tonight’s dinner included quinoa and that friends should really come as no surprise.

For awhile now I’ve been shouting from the hilltops and declaring my newfound love of quinoa to anyone who would listen and care to join me in this delicious treat. Someone did listen. One of my clients bestowed upon me the gift that keeps on giving, a 25lb bag of quinoa, all for me. What does one do with a 25lb bag of quinoa? Besides making sure my new “baby” is properly stored (in an airtight container in a cool dry place in case you were wondering) I am now on the hunt for as many quinoa recipes as I can find. Recently I managed to whip up a Quinoa Crusted Greek Quiche (recipe below). This also serves as my first time preparing a quiche, I’m reaching so many milestones.

And now what you have all been waiting for, the recipe. We begin by first preparing the quinoa crust.

Most recipes I found included eggs in the crust and then I stumbled upon this 2 ingredient recipe found here. I figured why add more egg to a quiche, doesn’t it have enough already. Side note the crust alone is vegan and gluten free so feel free to get creative with what you put inside.

Quinoa Crust

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1.5 cups water
  • 2 Tbsp ground flax seed
  • 2 Tbsp water (additional if needed)

Directions:

  1. Cook quinoa in water. Add 1 cup quinoa and 1.5 cups water into pot, bring to the boil, stir well, cover and immediately reduce heat to simmer. Simmer for about 10 minutes or until water is completely absorbed.

  2. Remove from heat and fluff with a spoon to prevent from sticking to bottom of pot and quickly cover again to keep in steam.

  3. Preheat oven to 400 F (200ºC).

  4. Let quinoa cool down enough to be able to work with it with your hands.

  5. Once quinoa is touchable, add ground flax to it and knead together with your hands until the flax seed is thoroughly mixed into the quinoa and everything forms kind of a dough.

  6. If the quinoa falls apart into its individual little seeds, add a little more water (1 Tbsp at a time) to make it stickier.

  7. The dough may kind of fall apart but in big chunks, not the individual seeds.

  8. Put dough in a lightly greased (especially the sides) 9″ (24cm) pie dish and press into the dish with your fingers until bottom and sides are covered up to the edge.

  9. Place in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden. While your crust is baking you can begin prepping for the filling.

    Qunoa Crust
    Golden Baked Quinoa Crust

    After your crust is baked you can begin filling inside. 

    Greek Ingredients
    Greek Inspired Quiche Filling

    Next step adding the egg mixture and cheese.

    Added egg and cheese
    Egg mixture & feta to complete filling

    Once your crust is filled it’s time to bake at 375°. Let cool for 5 minutes before serving. 

    Baked quinoa greek quiche
    Baked Greek Quinoa Quiche

    One of my favorites is how much more the quinoa crusted up after baking the quiche. This remained crispy even after refrigeration and reheating. Let us know how you liked it. 

    greek quinoa quiche
    Enjoy!

    Quinoa Crusted Greek Quiche Filling

    Ingredients (filling):

    • 1 tsp avocado or olive oil
    • 1 small red onion sliced
    • 2 cloves of garlic
    • 1/2 bag (5 ounces) of spinach
    • 1/3 cup sliced Greek olives
    • 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
    • 1/2 cup coconut milk or milk of your preference (almond, 1%, etc)
    • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
    • Salt & Pepper to taste
    • 4 large eggs
    • 2 large egg whites
    • 1.5 ounces crumbled feta cheese

    Directions:

    1. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add oil and onion; sauté 3 minutes. Add garlic, olives, mushrooms and spinach; sauté 3 minutes. Remove from heat; cool.

    2. Combine milk and next 4 ingredients in a bowl; stir with a whisk. Arrange spinach mixture in crust; pour egg mixture over spinach. Sprinkle with feta. Bake at 375° for 35 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes; cut into wedges.

– Michele

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