day and frozen by night, the precipitation being as low as eight inches a year as well as devastating hailstorms, this rugged land is able to produce a desert plant… it is called quinoa.
Quinoa is a leafy herb that will grow up to six feet tall and can produce an abundance of seeds…seeds that are a nutritious and versatile food. It is an amazingly sturdy plant that will thrive even in the harshest of climates.
When its time to harvest arrives, these plants will be uprooted, dried in the sun, then threshed by hand. This shows yet another remarkable property of this plant called quinoa. It is able to be stored for years without spoiling. This makes it a real blessing during long dry seasons the world over. It is easy to see why it is the staple food not only of people in the dessert dry areas but again the world over.
We are just beginning to appreciate the real value of quinoa being the “newest grain in town,” as declared by the San Francisco Chronicle. Quinoa is low in sugar and starch. Rich in fiber and unsaturated oils. It contains many essential minerals and vitamins. High in protein. It contains the ideal balance of the amino acids we need, most importantly including lysine that is not typically found in vegetable protein. For this reason some experts call quinoa an “ideal food”.
Quinoa has a unique, nutty taste especially that can be bought out when lightly toasted. It can used as a breakfast cereal…served cold with or as a salad…hot as a side dish…sweet as a dessert. The versatility of this plant is virtually endless.
Ready to give this wonder grain a try? Try some of these recipes…
- Quinoa & Lentil Taco Bake
- Quinoa Salad with Grapes
- Curried Quinoa Salad
- Summer Vegetable Stir-fry
- Holiday Soup For the Soul
- Breakfast Quinoa
- Oatmeal Quinoa Cookie
- Quinoa Streusel Muffins
- Pumpkin Pie Quinoa Breakfast Bake
- Pumpkin Quinoa Bars
What kind of nutritional punch can you expect?
Not too shabby!
Do you use quinoa?
What is your favorite way to use this protein packed ancient grain!?
Until next time…