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One-Skillet Recipe: Vegetarian Quinoa Dish

 

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The Big Q – What is Quinoa?

Everyone wants to know: Is it a grain? How do you use it? How do you pronounce it? Is it good for you? Is it kosher for Passover?

So I looked it up. Turns out, this trendy food is from South America and it’s a species of goosefoot, a “grain-like” crop. That clears everything up, doesn’t it?

But there’s more. The fact is that quinoa (pronounced keen-wah or kee-no-uh, your choice) is packed with calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and iron, and has a high protein content to boot. Unlike wheat and rice (but similar to oats) it contains a balanced set of amino acids, making it a complete protein source. It’s high in fiber, gluten-free and easy to digest. It’s so nutritious that NASA is considering it as a crop for their Controlled Ecological Life Support System for long-duration manned space flights. (So if your kids turn up their noses, tell them it’s astronaut food!)

It’s kinda like rice or couscous. Has a nice, nutty flavor too.

It seems that the ancient Incas were onto this little wonder food as far back as 3,000 years ago and it played a major role in sustaining their teeming civilization. It’s been a staple in that part of the world all this time, and we only just discovered it on our grocer’s shelves a few years ago. Go figure. But it’s time we got in on it. Any food that’s equally at home in a primitive mountain village or in outer space has my respect.

There. I think I answered all your questions. Oh, the Pesach thing. Ask your rabbi.

Listen, I can’t help with everything. Quick & Kosher doesn’t include clean up, doesn’t do your dishes and doesn’t answer tricky halachic questions. But I do have a year-round recipe for you: Asian Vegetables with Quinoa. Light and totally vegetarian, you will feel good about yourself after eating this for dinner. Do I get points for that?

And if you are looking for one skillet meat dishes don’t miss my my Chicken with Roasted Winter Fruit and Steak with Red Wine Glazed Vegetables.

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About Jamie Geller

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Jamie Geller is the only best-selling cookbook author who wants to get you out of the kitchen – not because she doesn’t love food – but because she has tons to do. As “The Bride Who Knew Nothing” Jamie found her niche specializing in fast, fresh, family recipes. Now the "Queen of Kosher" (CBS) and the "Jewish Rachael Ray" (New York Times), she's the creative force behind JoyofKosher.com and "Joy of Kosher with Jamie Geller" magazine . Jamie and her hubby live in Israel with their five busy kids who give her plenty of reasons to get out of the kitchen - quickly. Check out her new book, "Joy of Kosher: Fast, Fresh Family Recipes."

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