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Tuesday, March 7, 2017




Quinoa (pronounced: keen - wah) is the common name for Chenopodium quinoa of the flowering plant family Amaranthiceae.  It is grown as a grain crop primarily for its edible seeds.  It is a pseudocereal rather than a true cereal due to its not being a grass.  Quinoa is closely related to the edible plants beetroot, spinach, and amaranth.
When cooked the nutrient composition is comparable to common cereals like wheat and rice supplying a moderate amount of dietary fiber and minerals.  Quinoa is gluten free and considered easy to digest.  2013 was declared the International Year of Quinoa
There are 3 main types of quinoa: white, red, and black.


Quinoa originated in the Andean region of Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Columbia,m and Chile.  The Incas, who considered the crop to be sacred called the crop "Mother of all grain."  It was domesticated 3000 to 4000 years ago for human consumption.  It has become increasingly popular in the U.S. , Canada, Europe, Australia, China, and Japan.  Quinoa has become popular in the Jewish community as a substitute for the leavened grains that are forbidden during the Passover.  In 2013 the "Orthodox Union", the world's largest kosher certification agency announced it would begin certifying quinoa as kosher for Passover. 


Quinoa is one of the few plant foods that contain all nine amino acids of protein.  It is also high in fiber, magnesium, B-vitamins, iron, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, vitamin E, and various beneficial antioxidants.  Quinoa is gluten free. 

Health Benefits:

  1.  Protein - 8 grams                                                                                                                              Fiber - 5 grams                                                                                                                                Manganese - 58% RDA                                                                                                                  Magnesium - 30% RDA                                                                                                                  Phosphorus - 28% RDA                                                                                                                  Folate - 19% RDA                                                                                                                            Copper - 18% RDA                                                                                                                          Iron - 15% RDA                                                                                                                              Zinc - 15% RDA                                                                                                                              Potassium - 9% RDA 
           Over 10% Vitamins B1, B2, B6                                                                                                                Small amounts calcium, B3 (niacin) and vitamin E                                                                                  Total 222 calories with 39 grams of carbs and 4 grams fat, and a small amount of omega3                     fatty acids.  No GMO, gluten free.

      2.  Contains the plant compounds quercetin and kaempferol which are flavonoids, which are plant antioxidants that have been shown to have all sorts of beneficial effects on health.  Quercetin and kaempferol have also been shown to have anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-cancer and anti-depressant effects in animals.

     3.  Quinoa is much higher in fiber than most grains
     4.  Very high in protein with all the essential amino acids  

     5.  Has a low glycemic index , however is relatively high in carbohydrates

     6.  High in important minerals like iron and magnesium

     7.  Has beneficial effects on metabolic health.  Studies found quinoa significantly reduced blood                 sugar, insulin, and triglyceride levels

     8.  Very high in antioxidants

     9.  May help you loose weight because it is high in protein which can increase metabolism and                 reduce appetite.


Put 2 cups of water or broth in a pot.

Add 1 cup raw, rinsed quinoa, with a dash of salt.

Boil for 15 - 20 minutes until water absorbed 


Eating Ideas:

  • Combine cooked chilled quinoa with pinto beans, pumpkin seeds, scallions and coriander.  Season to taste.  eat as a salad. 
  • Add nuts and fruits to cooked quinoa and serve as a breakfast porridge. 
  • Add quinoa to vegetable soup.
  • Use quinoa as a substitute for bulgar wheat when making tabbouleh.

So..... East up !  Enjoy !  I'll show you how.

Simple but Good:

Quinoa with Black Beans and Corn

3 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion chopped
1 tsp olive oil
3/4 cup raw quinoa rinsed with cold water
1 1/2 c vegetable broth 
1 tsp cumin 
1/4 tsp Cayenne pepper
Salt and pepper to taste 
1 c cooked kernel corn 
2 cans black beans drained and rinsed
1/2 cup chopped cilantro

Heat oil in saucepan over medium heat and saute onion and garlic until lightly brown (about 10 
Mix quinoa into onion mixture and cover with broth.  Add cumin,  cayenne, pepper, and salt.  Bring to a boil Cover and  simmer until broth is absorbed (about 20 minutes.
Stir in corn and cook about 5 minutes.  Add black beans and cilantro.. 

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