Thursday, May 3, 2012

Baked Quinoa & Cheese (like Mac & Cheese)

Adapted from this recipe  It's a little time-intensive but most of that is waiting for it to cook on the stove or in the oven.
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • a handful of fresh chives, minced
  • 1/2 cup diced tomato, or red/green pepper
  • 1/2 cup finely diced carrot
  • 1 1/2 cups quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • good pinch of salt
  • a few grinds of seasoning salt (Lawry's)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 3 cups of water (or stock)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 1/2 cups grated Cheddar cheese, more for sprinkling- NOTE: (You may find you need more cheese, BUT I use this amount to still keep the dish 'lighter' yet very flavorful.)
  • Optional- Crushed Red Pepper, Panko Bread crumbs for topping
  • Toppings (optional)- salsa, hot sauce, sour cream, scallions (you get the picture)
  1. Heat oil in med. saucepan over med. heat. Add carrots and tomatoes (or bell peppers-or any veggies you want really); cover and cook 5 mins or until tender. Stir in quinoa, chives and garlic, and cook, uncovered, 3-4 mins, or until grains start to turn opaque.  (They will not fully be cooked yet.)
  2. Add 3 cups water (or stock) and season with salt and the Seasoning Salt. Cover and reduce heat to med-low and simmer 15-20 mins or more, (depends and also what kind of quinoa you use) or until most liquid has been absorbed. Remove from heat and let stand 5 mins.
  3. Preheat oven to 350 F. Coat 13x9 inch dish with cooking spray. Whisk together eggs and milk in large bowl. Fold in quinoa mixture and cheese (if you feel you need more cheese, add here.) Stir very well and let some of the cheese melt. (Will seem a little "soupy", do not worry, it will all mold together.)
  4. Transfer to prepared baking dish and if using Panko Crumbs or Bread crumbs, add now.You can also sprinkle a bit more cheese on now if you prefer for topping. Bake 25-35 mins, (or until browned around edges.)   In my PC Stone it took close to 35 minutes.

Baked Italian Tilapia

Why did I not try this sooner? It's so simple and delicious - not "fishy" at all!

6 small tilapia fillets
1 28 oz can petite diced tomatoes
1 Tbsp Italian seasoning

Heat oven to 350.  In a 13x9 baking dish, put a little bit of the juice from the tomatoes in the bottom, lay fillets down in a single layer.  Combine Italian seasoning with diced tomatoes and pour over fish. Bake 20-30 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork.