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Quinoa & Vegetable Laksa

Whaddayaknow: it’s is already the fourth time four Dutch foodie bloggers are getting together for a weekend cooking blog hop! This time we’re focussing on quinoa. Have you ever had quinoa for dinner? Or breakfast for that matter — I’ve seen several recipes but haven’t dared trying yet for myself. Just like I’m reluctant to eat rice in the morning… But what am I saying? Contrary to how it’s used in Western cuisine, quinoa is not a grain but a vegetable related to leafy greens like spinach and Swiss chard! Well, the seeds of it anyway.

The first time I tried quinoa was during my 10-day ExtraVeganza project. I made a stir-fry from The Guardian. Since then I’ve used it a few times in bento’s (#131, #161, #176, #177), but as I’m only halfway my second package… I guess it has not been used not that often! Rather surprisingly. O_o Because I like the taste, it’s quick & easy to make and belongs to the category of ‘super foods’ — meaning that it’s ultra healthy. ;) Quinoa is gluten-free, high on so-called complete proteins, vitamins B1&2, E, iron, copper and magnesium. Reading that you already feel better, right? ;)

The quinoa dish I’m sharing today is Quinoa & Vegetable Laksa. Laksa is an Asian chowder-like thick soup. Mr Gnoe and I had two helpings each so that our bellies were filled but not the I-need-to-lie-on-the-couch kind of full. Very satisfying but low-fat! This is a perfect weekday meal for when you’re tired and the fridge is empty.

I veganised the original recipe from BBC’s Good Food and made some adaptations dictated by the (barren) contents of my cupboards.

Quinoa and Vegetable Laksa

Quinoa & Vegetable Laksa

Ingredients – serves 2

  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 2 tbsp Patak’s mild curry paste
  • about 50 ml water
  • 500 ml oat milk
  • 400 g frozen mixed vegetables, or any veggies at hand which were in my case: frozen peas and green beans, corn kernels from a can, a large spring onion/small leek (sliced), an old turnip (nuked), some red and green bell pepper in small pieces
  • 85 g quinoa, rinsed (!)
  • 2 ts vegan broth powder
  • salt & pepper

Preparation

  1. Simmer the onion, curry paste and water for 5 minutes in a large saucepan, stirring from time to time. Begin with a splash of water and add some when the mixture gets too dry.
  2. Heat the oat milk in a jug in the microwave.
  3. Add the vegetables, quinoa, broth powder and stir in the milk.
  4. Bring to the boil, simmer gently for 10 mins until the quinoa is cooked.
  5. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Let it sit for a short while longer if the directions of the quinoa call for that.

Mixed salad that accompanied our laksaServe with salad and bread — naan would be awesome!

Suggestions

Next time I would like to try this recipe with almond milk instead of oat. Mr Gnoe thinks that will be too overwhelming but I think it may be good. Or maybe half of each. Of course you can use any plant-based milk but some will be better than others.

Also, the original recipe was titled “Spicy vegetable and quinoa laksa” but my tastebuds failed to notice any heat. Of course that depends on the the type of curry paste: I may use a stronger one next time, or just add a red chilli.

Always remember to rinse your quinoa seeds before cooking. They have a bitter-tasting coating (called saponins), which is mildly toxic and meant to make the kernels less-palatable to birds and other seed-eaters. These days quinoa has already been cleaned by the manufacturer but it’s good to get rid of possible remnants. Just follow the instructions on the package.

<whisper mode> Of course I shouldn’t say so in a post dedicated to quinoa, but you can also use 150 grams of basmati rice instead — just cook until done. But you didn’t hear that from me, okay?! ;) <whisper mode off>

And now that you’ve opened a package of quinoa: hop over to my fellow foodies for their awesome recipes!

Chinoiseries goes south with her North African Quinoa Stew ~ vegan
JannyAn serves a Quinoa Salad with Cranberries and Apricot ~ vegan
Uniflame baked some Black Bean & Quinoa Burgers ~ vegetarian

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