Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Grateful for Quinoa :)

I'm not a vegan or vegetarian. I'm sadly quite unenlightened in my eating. Nothing satisfies me more in the food department than a nice juicy cheeseburger, crisp onion rings with a dribble of ketschup, and a giganto diet soda. Those choices have led to overweight, high cholesterol, diabetes, and possible other complications to my life now and in the future that remain hidden from me by the veil of time.

That doesn't address my sweet tooth, or the love of refined white flour products, although the bun on the burger is undoubtedly part of its charm. Especially when it has juice from the burger soaking into it. By now you are either starting to drool, shaking your head, or gagging. What does any of this have to do with quinoa?

We've started working quinoa into our meals, and it is making a difference in the weight I'm actually losing. Quinoa may be an acquired taste. My sister told me she thinks it tastes like dried lightening bugs, and although it made me giggle, it did ring somewhat true to me as well. Healthy may not be initially delicious. But I am a seeker in my life. While in the waiting room, waiting for our granddaughter to join the family, I read of the wonders of quinoa. Have to try that was my thought. But then, for the longest time it conveniently slipped my mind. Then for the next almost, but not quite as long, it required some looking to find. Then my first taste test, while not as strong a negative reaction, not really a bingo, either. :)

So far our best recipe for quinoa has been to add fresh vegetables especially cucumber which we both like but seldom put even in salad. Whatever is on special at the grocery adds to the ingredients, and it is convenient too, as I can make twice as much as we'll eat, and so far it has held over in the fridge until the next day. The other ingredient, greek yogurt is also high in protein, so we don't get hungry later in the evening.

What else goes with quinoa? It wasn't long before I started experimenting with other combinations. The first was mixing in an olive medley that included pickled pepperchelli and roasted red peppers. I think marinated artichoke hearts would work great with the olive medley, but don't keep them in the pantry. Next time I'll add both. In fact, I'm pretty sure that anything that would go on an antipasto tray would combine with the Greek style yogurt and quinoa. Now here is my first actual recipe. :) Real measurements, not just "till it looks right" directions.

1 jar 12 oz of Vita Herring in real sour cream
1 cup of quinoa(cooked and cooled)
1/3 cup of Greek yogurt.

Combine and refrigerate at least a couple of hours before serving to allow flavors to blend. Stir again just before serving.
Here is part of the nutritional info, I'll have to look up the rest.

Herring: Calories 110 Fat calories 70
Vitamin A 0%, Vitamin c 0%, Calcium 2%, Iron 4%,(based on a 2000 calorie diet) 5 servings of 1/4 cup in the jar. Each contains:Total Fat 7g, Saturated Fat 3g,
Trans Fat 0g,Polyunsat. Fat 1g, Monounsat. Fat 3g(good source of Omega 3s)as per their label, Cholesterol 35 mg 12%, Sodium 600mg 25%, Total Carb 5 grams 2%, Fiber 0g, Sugars 4g, Protein 7g.

This is a better combination for me as a diabetic than for someone with blood pressure issues. I'm going to try Herring in a different medium next time. If it has lower sodium. If you've gotten this far, thanks for hanging in there!

We used to eat sour cream herring on New Year's Eve. This sized jar not on a special sale was about $3.75. But as we'll be using this as a main course, that doesn't seem bad for 4 servings. $0.94 for the herring per portion. I'll try to remember to come back and update all of this for nuitrition and costs. Quinoa and greek yogurt aren't cheap, but worth their cost. Cooked quinoa can be added to a vegetable soup for a bit of a chew like barley. Greek yogurt mixed in with morning cereal and some fresh berries is way more filling and nutritious that fruity yogurt and granola...

1 comment:

PrisNasonShartle said...

You my friend are amazing. Never heard of Quinoa, but cannot say that anymore and look forward to finding ways to use it in my kitchen. Thanks for sharing.