Quinoa, how I love thee! I could write sonnets and love songs to quinoa. It’s the perfect grain- it cooks up quick, packs a nutritional punch the likes of which are rarely seen, and tastes pretty darn great too! Truth be told? It’s not even technically a grain (shhh! don’t tell!). Quinoa is actually a seed. I’m not one to quibble over the details and for all intents and purposes it might as well be a grain.
Quinoa takes a back seat in this recipe, simply bolstering the protein and adding some structure to the filling, but it’s an easy way to make a quick and classy vegetarian entree. If pine nuts are priced too high (seems like they just keep getting more and more expensive), use any chopped nut you prefer or try with sunflower seeds. This recipe actually comes from our cookbook, not the one we’re giving away today.
Portobello Stuffed with Quinoa and Pine Nuts
- 6 large Portobello Mushroom Caps
- 1 small Onion, finely chopped
- 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 1/2 cup blanched, drained, squeezed and chopped Spinach
- 2 to 3 Garlic cloves, minced
- Kosher Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper
- 2 cups cooked Quinoa (see package directions)
- 1 cup Ricotta Cheese*
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan*
- 1/4 cup Pine Nuts
Preheat the broiler and cook the mushrooms for about 5 to 8 minutes, turning once, until tender. Drain the mushrooms, pat dry and set on a baking sheet, gill-side up.
Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F.
Sauté the onion in the olive oil until tender, then add the spinach and garlic, season with salt and pepper, mix well and cook just to heat through. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the quinoa, ricotta and Parmesan. Mound 1/2 cup of this mixture on each of the prepared mushroom caps, sprinkle with pine nuts, season with additional salt and pepper if desired. Bake for 15 minutes. Serve hot.
* To make this recipe vegan, use mashed silken tofu mixed with a dash of lemon juice in place of the ricotta. Or try this recipe for making vegan ricotta from cashews. Substitute parmesan with a vegan variety (such as Parma! ), make your own or simply leave it out.
Now for a giveaway that most certainly does NOT put quinoa in the back seat. (Nobody puts quinoa in the corner! Sorry, just couldn’t help myself.) Quinoa 365 by Patricia Green and Carolyn Hemming contains over 170 recipes featuring quinoa for everything from breakfast to dessert. Recipes include beautiful photos and have designations for gluten free, vegetarian and kid-friendly. Filled with recipes for everything from Italian Wedding Soup to Quinoa Temaki, this book also includes a slew of tips for how much dry quinoa will yield, sprouting quinoa and how to cook quinoa in the slow cooker.
How to enter: leave a comment on this post with some fun fact about quinoa. We could all gain from learning more about this special seed (ha- see, beat you to that one!) then be sure to click on “I DID THIS” in the application below. This is what enters you into the drawing, but don’t worry- I check all winners to be sure they complied with the rules for entry. In addition to this lovely book, I’ll also kick in a package of quinoa to get you started. Contest runs until 12:01 on 12/5.