For those who want to love quinoa more than they do, incorporating quinoa into a soup or stew is one way to avoid its stick-in-your-teeth seediness.
Here, it bulks up a simple black bean soup, providing the starch (and extra protein) to make a hearty meal.
Servings: 1 - 2
- 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 very small onion or large shallot, chopped
- 1 medium clove garlic, chopped (1 teaspoon)
- 1 small carrot, chopped
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika (pimenton, sweet or hot)
- 1 small tomato, hulled and chopped
- 1/4 cup dried quinoa, rinsed and drained
- 1 1/2 cups homemade or no-salt-added vegetable broth
- 1/2 cup homemade or no-salt-added cooked black beans
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup lightly packed baby spinach leaves, chopped
Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Once the oil shimmers, add the onion or shallot, the garlic and carrot; cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent, 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in the paprika, tomato, quinoa, broth and black beans. Season with the salt and pepper.
Increase the heat to medium-high and bring the liquid to a boil, then reduce the heat to low so the mixture is barely bubbling around the edges. Cover, and cook until the quinoa has swelled and is tender, 20 minutes. Stir in the spinach leaves and cook just until they are wilted, a few minutes.
Transfer to a bowl and eat.
From Joe Yonan, author of "Serve Yourself: Nightly Adventures in Cooking for One" (Ten Speed Press, 2011).
Tested by Joe Yonan and Mickey Douglas.
E-mail questions to the Food Section at email@example.com.