Tuesday, August 13, 2013

0 Recipe #365: Hot Quinoa Cereal with Nuts, Cinnamon, & Nectarines

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Due to another impending book deadline, there's zero time today to wax effusive, so I'll just cut straight to the chase. Below is a dish I cooked up for breakfast this morning, which will also be appearing in The Athlete's Cookbook, in a modified form.

Hot Quinoa Cereal with Nuts, Cinnamon, & Nectarines

4 c. water (for cooking quinoa)
1 c. quinoa + 1 c. water (for soaking)
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp. salt
3/4 c. organic soy or coconut milk (or skim milk, if you prefer)

2 Tbsp. honey, or to taste
1/4 c. sliced almonds
1/4 c. walnuts, halved or crushed
1 c. nectarines, pitted, peeled, and diced

Directions: Bring a large covered pot of water to a rolling boil, about 6-8 minutes. Meanwhile, soak quinoa for 5-10 minutes until it starts to puff up a bit. (This is a very important step as quinoa needs to be soaked in order to release its saponin, which creates a bitter taste unless removed.) When quinoa is ready, transfer into a fine mesh sieve, rinse under running water, and then drain and set aside. Reduce heat to low, then add rinsed and drained quinoa into the pot, stir, cover, and simmer for 5 minutes. Uncover, add vanilla extract, stir, cover again with lid, and cook for a final 5 minutes. While the cereal is cooking, place nuts onto an aluminum-foil covered toaster pan and toast on 350°F for 2-3 minutes, or until light golden brown. Watch nuts carefully, as they will burn very easily. When finished, set tray aside to allow nuts to cool for 5-10 minutes. When cereal is ready, uncover, and then stir in honey, cinnamon, and salt. Fluff, then let stand another 5 minutes to cool slightly. Pour in milk, then stir in fruit and nuts. Place into bowls, serve, and enjoy.

Yield: 4-6 servings.

Chef's Notes: Another great idea is to add raisins &/or other types of dried fruit (dried cherries, cranberries, etc.) to your hot cereal, which can either be incorporated separately or mixed together with whatever fresh fruit you have on hand. Or, add fresh coconut slivers or unsweetened shredded coconut, either in addition to or as a replacement for, the almonds and walnuts.

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