About this recipe:The miracle grain of the Incas, quinoa (pronounced keen-wa) makes a colourful and nourishing dish served pilaf-style. Accompany it with quick vegetable kebabs drizzled with balsamic vinegar.
150g quinoa, rinsed
400ml hot vegetable stock, made with a stock cube
2 x 250g packs roasting vegetables, such as wedges of red onion, pepper strips, and chunks of courgette and squash
2 tbsp sunflower oil
2-3 sprigs of fresh thyme
200g can sweetcorn, drained
125g frozen peas or sliced green beans
250g marinated tofu, cut into bite-sized cubes
1 tsp mild chilli powder or a few shakes of Tabasco sauce, to taste
3 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
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Method Prep:10min › Cook:20min › Ready in:30min
Cook the quinoa: Preheat the oven to 200°C (180°C fan oven), gas 6. Place the quinoa and stock in a large pan, and add 1/2 tsp salt and ground black pepper. Bring to the boil, then cover and simmer gently for 10 minutes.
Make the kebabs: While the quinoa is cooking, push the roasting vegetables onto eight metal skewers, brush with the oil and scatter with some leaves from the thyme sprigs. (The kebabs can also be cooked on wooden skewers, but soak them for 15-30 minutes beforehand so that they do not burn in the oven.) Place in a shallow roasting tin and season. Roast for 10-12 minutes or until the vegetables begin to soften.
Flavour the quinoa: Stir the sweetcorn into the pan of quinoa and add the butter, peas or beans and the tofu. Add the chilli powder or Tabasco sauce to taste. Cover again and cook gently for a further 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and leave to stand for 5 minutes. Add the parsley and fork through.
Serve: Drizzle the balsamic vinegar over the kebabs and return them to the oven to roast for a further 5 minutes or until just tender. Serve with the quinoa.
*Always rinse quinoa thoroughly before using, as it has a natural coating, called saponin, which can give the grain a bitter taste. *Quinoa is a complete protein and you can make it into an even more nourishing meal by serving with a little additional protein and some vegetables.
Quinoa can be cooked, cooled and stored in the freezer for up to three months. To use, microwave from frozen on High for 5 minutes, forking through the grains once.