Here’s what Blake wrote about this dish:
Last time it was farro; now it's quinoa. My wife is doing all she can to introduce healthier foods into my diet. I'm up for the challenge, as long as the ingredients I use still taste good and don't just act as vehicles for a bunch of vegetables that don't taste like much on their own. Whatever I cook should be valued first for its flavor, and then for how good it is for me. Often, you can make those two goals work in tandem; it's just that once you move "tastes great" out of first place and replace it with "healthy," it's all downhill.
Fortunately, I was really impressed with quinoa: It was nutty, fluffy, and tender. Though it looks like little pieces of brown cous cous and tastes like some kind of grain, it's actually a seed. Unlike most grains, it's a complete protein. I found this recipe in the January issue of Martha Stewart Living, which stirs in a highly flavorful mixture of Swiss chard and mushrooms to the cooked quinoa and tops it with shaves of Parmesan. (HL omitted the Parmesan)
There's no doubt that it's good for you—but that doesn't mean it has to taste like sawdust.
- 1 cup quinoa
- 2 cups of No-Chicken Vegetable broth or a low-sodium vegetable broth
- 1 pound Swiss chard, chopped
- Small pinch red pepper flakes (to taste)
- 1 clove garlic, sliced
- 12 ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced
- 1 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
Important NOTE: Please follow the water/liquid & quinoa measurements/ratio on your own package of quinoa!! They can differ from one brand to the next. You want to use 1 cup of quinoa, but adjust the liquid to your package instructions!
1. Combine the quinoa is a saucepan with 2 cups broth and salt to taste. Bring to a boil, cover, and simmer 10-15 minutes until the quinoa is fluffy and tender.
2. In the meantime, heat up a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chard and red pepper flakes, cover the pan, lower the heat, and cook until wilted and tender, about 8 minutes. Add some broth or water--1/4 cup at a time, if necessary. Season with salt and pepper and remove to a plate.
3. Add just a little broth or water to the pan, so the garlic won't burn, & then add the garlic, & cook for just a minute, over medium heat, until it's fragrant, & softened--not brown. Now, add the mushrooms. When they release their moisture, about 3 minutes, season with a pinch of salt and pepper, to taste. When they are tender, about 5 minutes, stir in the reserved chard and the thyme and heat through. Stir in the quinoa and divide among 4 bowls or plates.