Quinoa is a versatile grain and easy to prepare.
Recently rediscovered, this ancient cereal is thought to have been the “gold of the Incas”, and is one of the least allergenic of all grains. Quinoa is high in protein, includes all the essential amino acids, is an excellent source of fiber, and a very good source of iron and magnesium. Quinoa is excellent for cognitive support, as it is high in vitamin B-12, which supports brain cells, and manganese, which is an antioxidant. This quinoa pilaf can be a side or a main dish. You can add chicken to this recipe, and/or substitute for the zucchini a variety of different vegetables, such as spinach, chard, artichokes, or carrots.
Preheat oven to 350° F.In fine sieve, rinse quinoa under cold running water 1–2 minutes to remove this grain’s coating of saponin, a bitter, resin-like glucoside, set aside.
On ungreased baking sheet, arrange pumpkin seeds in single layer. Bake for 3–5 minutes, or until slightly darkened in color. Set aside.
Peel and chop shallot. Chop zucchini.
Add quinoa and broth or water to saucepan, bring to boil, and then reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Cover and cook until quinoa is tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed (20–25 minutes).
Meanwhile, in saucepan, heat oil over medium heat. Add shallot and ginger and sauté, stirring often, until softened (3–5 minutes). Add zucchini and stir until tender (5–7 minutes).
When quinoa is cooked, add shallot and zucchini mixture and mix in goat cheese. Stir to fluff, add salt to taste.
Serve hot, topped with toasted pumpkin seeds.
Preparation: 30 minutes