One of the curses and blessings of looking at and reading about food all the time, is it makes a gal hungry!
I saw a photo of cheesy grits this morning, and could not get the image out of my mind. It’s Monday. I had an ice cream sundae last night, and I try to keep my diet clean and healthy during the week. Then I got inspired to make a healthier version of the cheesy, grainy creaminess I was craving. Here’s what I did:
I cooked quinoa in salted water. When the water cooked through, I added some olive oil and closed the lid a moment to let it steam through. The olive oil added a nice layer of flavor and also kept the quinoa from sticking to the bottom of the pan. While the quinoa was still hot, I cracked an egg into the pot, and stirred vigorously to let the egg cook through. That added the creaminess I was craving. If you’re nervous about eating raw egg, you can keep the pot over a very low flame on the burner. And finally, to complete the need for a little more salt, fat and cream, I stirred in a small amount of grated Parmesan. So, while it’s not corn, with heaps of butter, cream, and cheese, which I save devouring on special occasions, it did the trick. And then to make it more healthy, I tossed the quinoa “grits” with fresh arugula, tomato and avocado. And the whole thing took me about 20 minutes to prepare, and really only about 5 minutes of active work.
I don’t know if they’re cowboy approved. But it sure made for a healthy and delicious lunch!
- 3/4 cup quinoa
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 egg
- About 1/4 cup shaved or grated parmesan
- salt and black pepper
- big bunch of arugula
- 1/2 – 1 whole tomato, cut into quarters
- 1/2 avocado, cut into chunks
- Toast the quinoa dry in a pot. When it starts to smell nutty, add water and salt, lower flame and cover for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Once the water cooks through, turn off the heat, add olive oil and cover pan to steam.
- After a minute or two, crack an egg and stir vigorously. Add salt and pepper to taste. If you’re concerned about the raw egg, you can keep the pot over a very low flame while stirring the quinoa and egg mixture.
- Stir in parmesan.
- Place arugula, tomato and avocado into a bowl. Add quinoa and toss to coat. Taste, and season more to your liking.