Saturday, January 26, 2013

Mediterranean Chicken and Quinoa

Quinoa. How the heck do you pronounce that anyway? (Its keen-wah, I found out after I'd been eating it for a few months) What do you think when you hear that? My initial reaction was "God bless you." By now I think we've all heard a hipster mention it. Well, turns out it's not just hip, it's good for you too! But, like a lot of things hat are good for you, it might not seem appetizing.

Luckily, the first time I had quinoa was at a restaurant, and it was delicious! I immediately fell in love. I decided to buy some right away. Then I got it home . . . and realized I had no idea what to do with it.

It was plain. It was brown. It was bland. It tasted like warm bird seed. Because that's what it is- seeds.

Well, quinoa happens to be one of my favorite foods now and I eat at least twice a week. It's clean, protein-rich, and can be delicious. If this is your first foray into preparing quinoa, try this recipe for starters.

Mediterranean Chicken and Quinoa

  • skinless boneless chicken breast
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • Olive oil
  • 1 water
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 3 large tomatoes, diced ( I used plum, but I think cherry tomatoes would be yummy too)
  • 1 large green bell pepper, diced
  • 3 oz crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/8 cup chopped fresh scallions or chives (2 tsp dried)
  • lemon juice
  • balsamic vinegar, to taste
  1. Cut chicken into cubes. If you have time, you can marinate the chicken in balsamic vinegar and lemon juice beforehand for added flavor and tenderness.
  2. Season cut chicken with oregano and garlic powder. Add 1 Tbs of olive oil to a skillet, and cook chicken over medium-high heat for about 10 mins.
  3. Put the broth and garlic in a pot and bring to a boil. If using dried scallions, you'll want to add those to the boiling pot too. Add quinoa and cook for recommended time. Usually about 15 mins.
  4. You have the option of sauteing the onions, or leaving them raw. I prefer cooked onions.
  5. When the quinoa is finished cooking, stir in the remaining ingredients (chicken, onion, bell pepper, feta cheese, tomatoes and scallions). Then drizzle with lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, and oil to your taste.
This makes about 3 servings. Each of those have around 400 calories and 19 grams of protein! That's right, 19. Damn. Can't wait to see your guns after eating this. Send pics ;)

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