Girl Food

Did you know that TLC plays all-wedding programming on Friday nights? Either their demographic is exclusively married women, or they’re trying to make us gals alone on a Friday night feel as lame as possible.

Anyway.

I’m trying to look on the bright side of Aussie’s absence. Here’s something… I get to experiment a bit more with my cooking. I can not offer “with bacon” as an option.. in fact, I can get away with not having meat at all.

Don’t get me wrong — I LOVE meat. My uncle was a butcher, my grandfather was a butcher… meat is kind of part of my fabric.

But… well… buying and cooking meat for one kind of sucks. I used to do it all the time, but I’m out of practice. So why not experiment? Why not have quinoa as my protein for a change?

Yeah, why not??

Roasted Garlic, Red Pepper, and Mushroom Quinoa, adapted from How Sweet It Is

This recipe takes awhile, but it’s tasty. I nixed the olive oil almost entirely, using less than a teaspoon for the entire recipe, and using nonstick spray to cook the veggies. I also added a little bit of butter for flavor. In retrospect, I think that perhaps the recipe meant to call for 1 cup of COOKED quinoa… in the future, I’ll likely either use that or double the veggies and garlic (without butter) for more flavor, but it’s good just as it is.

1 large head of garlic

1 cup uncooked quinoa

small drizzle of olive oil

1/2 cup chopped red pepper

1/2 cup chopped mushroom

3 tsp butter (optional)

salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Put garlic in a garlic roaster, drizzle with a little bit of olive oil, and roast for 40 mins. (For instructions on how to roast without a roaster, visit the link above!). Let garlic cool.

While garlic is roasting, soak quinoa in saucepan for at least 15 minutes, then drain water. Add 1 1/4 cup fresh water to the saucepan, bring to a simmer, then turn heat to low, cover tightly, and cook for 30 minutes. Remove from heat, let sit for 5 minutes, and fluff with a fork before serving.

Meanwhile, saute peppers and mushrooms with nonstrick spray and a drizzle of olive oil; about 6 minutes or so. Add to the cooked, fluffed quinoa, then squeeze all of the roasted garlic into the quinoa. If desired, add butter, then mix well. Season with salt and pepper before serving.

Eat, feel virtuous that you are eating something ridiculously healthy, and enjoy!

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