As much as I hate to admit it, we can’t live on sugar alone. (I actually should probably try to quit sugar altogether, but that is a different story.) And I figured you consumed enough candy yesterday to last a few days. So today I wanted to share something savory and healthy.
I saw this recipe in the November issue of Bon Appetit and wanted to try it ASAP. I was able to find the red quinoa at Trader Joe’s (they also have it at Whole Foods and I just saw some today at Publix), but they didn’t have short-grain black rice. I am sure that would be prettier — and would cook faster than the wild rice I used. But any color of rice and/or quinoa will work.
Regardless of what it says on the box, you should rinse your quinoa first. I know it’s kind of annoying, but it really only takes a minute or two. I also rinsed my rice, but that’s just because the package told me to.
The recipe called for lemon juice, but lime juice made more sense to me with the other flavors. You can use whichever you prefer/have available.
Don’t you hate when a recipe you want to try calls for like, 85 ingredients you don’t have? I didn’t mind getting most of the stuff for this (a lime is cheap and I will use the leftover quinoa and wild rice), but I am really bad with fresh herbs. They’re expensive, I am rarely able to use an entire package worth and I kill any living herbs I bring into my house. So I refused to buy three different types for this one dish. I left out the chives, but you can use those and leave out the cilantro (for all you cilantro haters out there) or parsley if you’d rather. It probably would even be good without any fresh herbs at all — just don’t try to use dried herbs instead of fresh.
Serve it with avocado. You won’t regret it.
Also, you may have noticed the bright pink graphic on the right — the guy with the hat. My blog is in the Baltimore Sun’s blog contest, so if you have a minute, please consider voting for me. I’d really appreciate it!
Cumin-scented quinoa and rice (Adapted from Bon Appetit, serves 6-8)
1/2 cup short-grain black rice (or any type of rice)
1 cup red quinoa
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 small onion
3 large garlic cloves
2 teaspoons dried cumin seeds
2-3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons 1-inch pieces of chives
Freshly ground black pepper
Cook rice according to package directions. Meanwhile, rinse and drain uncooked quinoa well. Combine with bay leaf, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 2 cups water in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat to low and simmer about 15 minutes (or until quinoa is done — the spiral part will have separated from the individual circles). Drain the quinoa, if necessary, then cover and let sit for 15 minutes.
Once rice and quinoa are off the heat (but still covered), finely chop onion and mince garlic. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a medium or large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is soft (about 8 minutes). Add garlic and cumin and cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes.
Remove the bay leaf from the quinoa and throw it away. Fluff the quinoa with a fork and scoop it to a large bowl. Add onion-garlic mixture and rice to quinoa and mix well. Stir in remaining oil, lime juice and fresh herbs. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Serve with slices of avocado and lime wedges.