Cooking with Kweeno...

I freaking love this commercial...
But guess what.. Quinoa (pronounced Keenwah even though I like to call it Kweeno) does NOT have to taste like a "dirty ole tree branch".
Quinoa is a seed that is eaten like a grain. It is extremely high in protein and fiber with lots of other great stuff like flavonoids that are antiviral and antiinflammatory. It is full of amino acids (for recovery) and magnesium.
It comes in 3 main varieties: Red, White, and Black

You cook it by boiling it like rice. I like to cook it in chicken or vegetable broth instead of plain water. I find it takes on a flavor similar to those chicken flavored rice packets we used to eat in college when you cook it this way. Goodbye tree branch!

I made this recipe last week and it lasted the whole week as a solid side for my lunches and dinners throughout the week. It's a little bit crunchy, sweet, salty and fresh. I messed around a bit with the flavors and didn't follow this recipe exactly but since you assemble it cooked you can add or remove whatever you like.
CALIFORNIA QUINOA SALAD


California Quinoa Salad (Found on http://triplantstrong.blogspot.com)

2 cups mixed quinoa from Trader Joe’s – regular quinoa or red quinoa would work well here too
4 cups plain water (for cooking quinoa – I cooked mine in my rice cooker on the white rice setting)
1 package frozen mango from Trader Joe’s, thawed OR 2-3 diced fresh mangos
1/2 large red onion, diced
1 medium to large red pepper, diced
1 small bunch cilantro, chopped 
1-2 cups shredded, unsweetened coconut
3/4 – 1 cup unsalted, dry-toasted slivered almonds
1-1 1/2 cups raisins (I used a dried mixed berry blend)
2-3 cups frozen edamame, thawed
Juice of 4-5 limes
3 – 4 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar 
Instructions:
1. Rinse quinoa well, cook as directed.
2. Fluff quinoa well when done, spread out and let cool.
3. Add all other ingredients and toss.
4. Enjoy cold!!

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