Quinoa ( pronounced as Keen-wah) is a superfood because of its nutritional profile. Commercially, it is mainly classified in black, red, and white/ivory quinoa with each having its distinct color, flavor, and taste.
Quinoa is not native to India, though now there are few farmers who are growing quinoa in India itself. So it doesn’t have an Indian name as such. It is easily available in supermarkets, malls, and even online. It can be used to prepare a variety of dishes right from porridge to desserts and even main course dishes like pulao.
I received a cute pack of White/ Ivory Quinoa with fantastic labeling and a recipe booklet from Queens Quinoa (http://www.queensquinoa.com/ ) as a gift for participating in one of their online events. Since I love trying out new ingredients I had to try them out. But I come from a family of Foodies, some of whom like traditional foods and others who love exploring new foods. So I chose the traditional Upma recipe and tweaked it. That way everyone in the family was happy.
Quinoa Upma Recipe
Cooking time: 40-45mins
Queens Quinoa: 1 1/2 cup ( you can use any other brand but do read the labeling before use)
Water: 3-4 cups
Green peas: 1 cup (boiled)
Carrot:1/2 cup (chopped)
Onion:1 large (finely chopped)
Tomato:2 medium (chopped)
Ginger: 1 tbsp (grated)
Green Chillies: 2 ( chopped)
Urad dal: 1.5 Tsp
Methi seeds: 1 Tsp
Curry leaves/ kadi patta: few
Cumin seeds/ jeera: 1 Tsp
Mustard seeds/ Rai: 1 Tsp
Turmeric: 1/2 tsp
Salt: As per taste
Oil: 1.5 Tsp
Pomegranate/ coriander leaves/ coconut for garnishing
- Rinse quinoa thoroughly.
- Take a vessel and boil 3 ( up to 4 cups if you want it softer) cups of water.
- Take a wok/ nonstick kadhai. Heat oil and add in the mustard seeds. Let them crackle and then add in the cumin seeds, urad dal, and methi seeds. Saute them lightly on a low flame
- Add in chopped green chilies, curry leaves, and grated ginger. Saute them.
- Add in the finely chopped onion and saute it till it turns light pink.
- Then add in the finely chopped carrots and the boiled peas.
- Add in the quinoa and saute it lightly with the vegetables for a minute. Once done, pour in the boiling water.
- Add the chopped tomatoes and turmeric. Let it all cook on low to medium flame till it is done. Takes about 15-20 mins. Once you see the edges of quinoa turn translucent you know it is done.
- Add in salt if required.
- Serve warm with pomegranate/ coriander/ coconut for garnish with a wedge of lime.