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Recipe: Quinoa with Sundried Tomatoes and Basil (GF)

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Autumn seems to bring with it potlucks, holiday dinners and gatherings of all kinds. And while this is lovely, it often adds another item to an already too long ‘to do’ list: preparing a dish to bring. You begin combing through your recipe collection and scouring the internet for something quick, easy and healthy. Well, call off the search! I’ve got you covered…

This quinoa recipe hits all the marks – a crowd pleaser, fast and easy to prepare, can be made in advance, can be heated up or eaten at room temperature, easy to pack, it’s filling AND it’s super healthy.

For those of you who might be new to quinoa (pronounced keen-wa), it’s a grain that’s often substituted for couscous or rice. Unlike most other grains, however, quinoa contains a fair amount of protein. Not only does that make it more filling, but it’s a nice protein option for vegans.

There are lots of different ways that quinoa can be dressed up. I happen to love this recipe, as the sundried tomatoes and basil give it a LOT of flavor and a distinctly Italian flair. This variation also pairs well with almost anything – red meat, chicken, fish and veggies.

Give it a try and don’t forget to post a Comment or a photo below!

Buon Apetito,

Karen

Quinoa with Sundried Tomatoes and Basil

2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

1 shallot, diced

½ cup sundried tomatoes (packed in olive oil), sliced

¼ cup basil, sliced into ribbons

1 cup quinoa

2 cups water or vegetable broth

½ tsp. salt

Pepper, to taste

Optional 3 Tbsp. pignoli nuts (pine nuts), toasted

Place quinoa into a fine-mesh strainer and rinse thoroughly with cold water. Drain and set aside.

If using pignoli nuts, place them in a small skillet over high heat. Toss them around the skillet for a minute or so, until they are lightly browned (do not walk away from them, as they burn quickly). Set aside.

In a medium saucepan, heat olive oil and add the shallot. Saute until the shallot is translucent (about 2 minutes), then add the sundried tomatoes. Continue sauteing for another minute.

Add quinoa and stir for a minute or two. Add the liquid and salt and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat and simmer for 15 minutes, at which point the quinoa will have absorbed all of the liquid.

Add the basil and pepper and toss to combine. Garnish with the toasted pignoli nuts (optional).

Serves 4-6.

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