Fiesta Quinoa

I needed something quick to make for dinner tonight to serve with some frozen haddock from Trader Joe’s that I had thawed.  I considered rice but it would take 40+ minutes to cook.  I realized it was a perfect night for quinoa since it only takes 20-25 minutes.  I used to make a recipe for Quinoa and Black Beans that Lo really liked, but I kept changing it so much that it no longer resembled original recipe.  Thus Fiesta Quinoa was born…

The quinoa reheats well and is pretty good at room temperature, which makes it a good recipe to bring to a cookout or potluck. Quinoa is a complete protein because it contains an adequate proportion of all nine of the essential amino acids, so this can be a meal on it’s own as well.

Fiesta Quinoa

1 cup uncooked quinoa
2 cups vegetable broth
3 tablespoons dried minced onion*
3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup shredded carrots
1 cup frozen corn kernels
1 cup frozen chopped peppers
1 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Add quinoa, broth, onions, and garlic to a medium saucepan.  Season with cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 15 minutes.  Stir in shredded carrots, simmer for 5 minutes.  Stir frozen corn and peppers into the saucepan, and continue to simmer about 5 minutes until heated through. Mix in the black beans and cilantro and heat through.

I served this with pan cooked haddock.  I just seasoned the thawed haddock with a rub and cooked in an oiled cast iron pan until done, about 3 minutes each side.

*If your frozen pepper mix includes onions, omit dried onion.  Alternatively, you can use fresh chopped onion and/or peppers – just cook in a pan and add to the quinoa when you add the black beans.  Feel free to use any veggies that you have on hand – zucchini, mushrooms, tomatoes, etc.

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