I’ll never forget the medical mission my family and I went on in Peru (which included a 28 mile hike to Machu Picchu on the ancient Inca trail) and how it gave me a renewed appreciation for fitness, Mother Earth, and quinoa! Commonly considered a grain, but actually a protein-rich seed, quinoa was revered as ” the gold of the Incas.” This nutritional treasure is a superfood you should include in your diet regularly.
Quinoa provides all the amazing benefits of whole grains along with complete protein, no gluten, a stellar package of vital minerals (more than any other whole grain), and a nice dose of vitamin E. The Incas recognized its value for enhancing strength and stamina, but I find its scrumptious flavor and texture most memorable. Costco sells a large bag of organic quinoa (Nature’s Earthly Choice brand) for an excellent value.
Here is one of my favorite quinoa recipes:
2 ripe medium avocados, peeled and sliced in half longitudinally
1 cup of dry quinoa prepared in chicken broth as per package instructions
2 carrots, finely chopped
½ purple onion, finely diced
1 medium squash, finely chopped
½ red bell pepper, finely chopped
¼ cup of diced chives
2 cloves of fresh garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp. of Dijon mustard
1 tbsp of mayonnaise
juice of ½ a lemon
Salt and pepper to taste
Prepare the quinoa in the chicken broth as per package instructions. Combine the cooked quinoa with all the remaining ingredients and gently toss until everything is evenly combined. Spoon the quinoa/veggie mixture onto the top of the avocado halves. Enjoy!
*Feel free to add or substitute any variety of fresh veggies (or fruit) to the quinoa. You can play around with various herbs and spices too.