My husband will not tolerate quinoa. The very utterance of its name sends him running from the room. I, being very delicate and dedicated to my waistline, adore everything about the tiny, trendy grain. I like to pronounce it: keen-wah. I like how it pops in your mouth. I like to mix it up with savory vegetables. I like how virtuous it makes me feel after a sausage-egg-and-cheese sandwich for breakfast. And you know how into pesto and all things food processorized I am right now. So it’s no surprise that when I came across the 101 Cookbooks recipe for double broccoli quinoa I was all about making it. Immediately!
Because I am a lazy cook, as well as a girl who demands instant gratification, I went to the kitchen to see if I had what it takes to cook this pot of wholesome greenness. Looking over her list of ingredients I had the necessary: broccoli, quinoa, olive oil but was missing a few key elements, i.e., dairy products. So, I adapted. I adapted and adopted the recipe as she has written it and I think what I came up with is pretty lovin’ delicious. We’ve got a fairly well-stocked pantry now, which helps you through afternoons when you work from home and want to snack and fiddle in the kitchen.
Here’s how I did it:
- florets of 2 broccoli heads
- 1 cup quinoa (already rinsed)
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 4 cloves of garlic
- handful of walnuts (my new bandname)
- Campo de Montalban cheese
- olive oil
I cooked the cup of quinoa in one cup boxed broth and one cup water, because that’s all I had. Meanwhile, I boiled the broccoli for two minutes, drained and rinsed it in the colander with cold water. In the food processor I combined garlic, walnuts, Campo de Montalban cheese (made from a mixture of cow, sheep and goat milk), and half the cooked broccoli. I added the olive oil while I whirred. I tasted and added salt and pepper, which I initially forgot. The original recipe call for half and half, which I omitted ’cause again, I don’t have any on hand, and fresh lemon juice, which I plum forgot, but plan to squeeze on when I serve. Hers had Parmesan, but I think this nutty hard cheese worked well and almonds but walnuts seem a more than acceptable substitute. She also made her own chili oil by infusing olive oil with red pepper flakes, but remember, I am half fast and lazy, so I will just garnish with a few flakes later when I eat it after dance class. The result is an intense pesto that I combined with some of the quinoa and topped with a few reserved florets. It’s oh so green, garlicky and gorgeous. My husband may disagree, but I think quinoa can save the world.