Sunday, January 3, 2010

quinoa stuffed acorn squash

So many posts in one day! And there's more to come! I served quinoa stuffed acorn squash for dinner tonight. A friend was on her way out of town, and neither of us felt like we had ingredients worthy of a dinner party nor did we want to shop for any - but we pulled it off. With her squash and quinoa, and my onion, spices, and broccoli.. we enjoyed a delicious dinner for 4.

Step 1. the bowl.
Oven! 350.
2 acorn squash (or 1/2 per person)

Cut the squash in half, scoop out the seeds, put face down in a baking pan, poke with a fork, cover with foil, and bake for 45 minutes.

Step 2. the stuffing.
1 cup quinoa, rinsed (pre-soaked is best)
2 tbsp olive oil (may need more)
1 med size red onion, diced
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1 tsp tumeric
1 tsp coriander
1/4 tsp cinnamon
2 cups water
1/2 cup broccoli florets
salt to taste

Use fine mesh filter to rinse the quinoa with cold water. (Quinoa is coated with a natural substance called saponin that protects the grain by repelling insects and birds. Rinsing the quinoa is important to avoid a raw or bitter taste. You can tell if there is saponin by the production of a soapy looking "suds" when the seeds are swished in water.)

Heat oil in a heavy saucepan. Saute the onions and garlic for four to five minutes.
Next add the grated ginger and quinoa. Cook for one minute stirring constantly until a fine, white spiral appears around each seed. Then stir in the turmeric, coriander, and cinnamon and cook for another minute. You can add the salt here, or at the end.. or not at all, and allow people to add their own amounts at the table.
Finally, add the water, bring it to a boil, then add the broccoli, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Fluff with a fork before serving.

Scoop the quinoa into the acorn squash bowl and enjoy!

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