Thursday, October 13, 2011

Quinoa cooked with Orange Juice!

Here's a very interesting recipe contributed by Ms Audrey Pang!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

An excellent complement for your meal: Chicken soup with Quinoa

This is a common soup dish eaten by Peruvians in South America. And it's not difficult to prepare.
*2 tablespoons olive oil
*1/2 cup carrots – chopped
*1/2 cup celery – chopped
*1/2 cup onions or scallions – chopped
*2 cups water
*3 cups chicken broth or stock
*1/2 cup quinoa – rinsed
*2 cups chicken - cooked and diced
*1/4 cup parsley - chopped fine
*1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
*1/2 teaspoon fresh black pepper
*1/2 teaspoon salt

And now follow this steps:

1)In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat.
2)Add ½ cup chopped carrots, ½ cup chopped celery, and ½ cup chopped onions or scallions to the heated oil and sauté for about 5 minutes or until the vegetables just start to brown.
3)Stir in 2 cups of water and 3 cups of chicken stock or broth and bring to a boil.
4)Stir in ½ cup of rinsed quinoa, 2 cups of cooked and diced chicken, ¼ cup finely chopped parsley, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ½ teaspoon black pepper, and ½ teaspoon salt. Cover the pan, reduce the heat to low, and cook for 20 minutes.
5)Adjust the seasoning if necessary and serve. This recipe yields approximately 8 one-cup servings.
... Deliciously nutritious!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Quinoa is good for babies too!

Creamy Quinoa Apple -Baby Food Recipe

· 1 cup quinoa.
· 1 1/2 - 2 cups water
· 1/2 cup of applesauce/apple puree.
· 1/2 cup of plain whole milk yogurt.

Then follow these steps:

1) In a large pot, bring 2 cups of water to a boil and add the 1 cup of quinoa. Cover the pot, reduce heat and simmer approximately 15 minutes or until liquid has been absorbed. Let stand for five minutes and then “fluff” a bit.
2) After fluffing, add 1/2 cup of applesauce/apple puree and 1/2 cup of plain whole milk yogurt. Stir to combine well - serve warm. Use applesauce and yogurt as you like - more or less depending on the final texture you desire. 

That’s it!... try this nutritious recipe on your baby !

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Quinoa + Rice

As Asians are generally quite unfamiliar with this wonderful complete-protein (it has all 9 essential amino acids that body needs) whole grain called quinoa (pronounced as "keen-wah") and reluctant to replace their must-have rice with this nutritious grain, it helps to mix both together to get the best of both worlds- the taste of rice with the nutrition of quinoa - protein, vitamins, minerals, etc. In addition, the mixture actually lowers the GI (glycemix index) of the meal, which is beneficial for your body's blood sugar level. Your cooked rice will have a slightly crunchy texture due to the quinoa -  almost unnoticeable in fact - plus a slight nutty aroma.
After soaking the quinoa for a few hours or rinsing it well, cook the rice together with quinoa in a rice cooker, the usual way you cook rice i.e. combine one part of quinoa/rice with two parts water. Here is how it looks like when cooked. Mix quinoa with black/brown rice for even more nutrition and fibre.

White rice cooked with quinoa

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Quinoa: Super food of the future

Originated in the Andean region of South America and considered as “the mother of the grains” by the Incas, quinoa is one of the most nutritious grains in the whole world. It has an almost perfect amino acid composition and contains calcium, phosphorus, vitamins B, magnesium, iron, and lysine (which helps in the development of the brain), it is low in sodium and doesn’t contain cholesterol.

Quinoa is gluten free and  easy to digest. What's more important is that this grain contains more protein than any other grain; an average of 16.2 percent, compared with 7.5 percent for rice, 9.9 percent for millet, and 14 percent for wheat.

Its leaves are also eaten as a vegetable. Quinoa has a nutty flavor; there are 3 types (black, red and white). The tri-color (mix of red, black and white grains) are also becoming quite popular.

The principal benefits of quinoa is that it can prevent breast cancer, osteoporosis, and heart diseases. It’s even more important for the kids because the quinoa helps them in their growth development, sustains energy and helps to prevent obesity.

Nowadays, it is being considered as an important food ingredient by NASA's Controlled Ecological Life Support System (CELSS).

How can it be used? in pastas, soups, puffed cereals, side dishes and more!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Simply fruit juice with maca...

Trying to up my energy level with 2 tsp of maca powder this time. I also added some blueberries for an extra boost of antioxidants. Then the usual assorted range of fruits like starfruits, oranges and some raw honey. Will try it the next time with organic coconut palm sugar which has a lower glycemic index than honey.
Fruits (incl. blueberries) + 2 tsp of maca powder
My husband casually commented that he felt slightly more energetic  i.e. not so sleepy in the afternoon after drinking this smoothie in the morning.

Friday, January 28, 2011

So why maca?

I was reading an online article the other day on maca, which was published on 23 Nov 2010 by El Comerio, Peru's dailies. Apparently, FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the U.N) awarded 2nd place to the research conducted by specialist Gustavo Gonzales Rengifo the from Peruana Cayetano Heredia University (Peru), entitled "Maca: From Lost Inca Food to Andean Miracle".

Mr Gonzales conducted a study on people between the ages of 35 and 75 in the region of Junin, Peru. 80% of the residents there consume maca daily. The results, according to him, were unquestionable. In his words, paraphrased and translated to English," Those who have been consuming maca are healthier, showing no mental nor physical deterioration, it was like they have not aged at all." Talking about anti-aging health supplements :-) Very appropriate for the highly strung society we live in.

Maca is a tuber native to Peru. It grows wild in the Andes mountain ranges in Peru for over thousands of years, at an altitude of 14,000 feet above sea level, withstanding extreme climate conditions.

Peruvian maca root
Many names have been given to it, 'Peruvian ginseng', Peruvian Viagra", etc. as the popular belief is that it is able to increase one's sexual urges and fertility rates. I'm not sure about the sexual urges part as I think every individual's body would respond differently  but this I would say, honestly, I do feel more energetic and alert after consuming the tsp of maca powder every day. Even Mr Gonzales, the specialist, claimed that 'maca does not change the hormonal functions of men/women in any way' so, no promises when it comes to what goes on in the bedroom department.

The interesting history behind maca:

When the Spaniards conquered the area of the Andes mountains centuries ago, their  sex drive started to diminish after living there for some time due to the high altitudes.  Women found it hard to conceive and men suffered from lack of libido.

However, to their amazement, they saw that the local people, llamas and other animals had no trouble with their libido and were reproducing normally. They found out that their secret was in a root that grew only in the high mountains. It was an important part of the diet (food as well as medicinal supplement) and commerce of the local people at that time.

The Spaniards wasted no time in starting to eat this maca and feed it to their livestock. Libido was restored to the men; the women's fertility issues were resolved and the animal reproduced normally. Tons of maca were collected as tribute and shipped back to the kings of Spain as a payment of tax. A happy ending for all!