Friday, April 15, 2011

Quinoa and Steel Cut Oats

My poor kids are sick with a virus, and neither of them are interested in eating much. These are the times I try to make every calorie count because I truly believe that empty bellies (or bellies filled with empty calories) slow healing. When my kids lose their appetites, they tend toward high carb, low nutritional things like Goldfish crackers, Cheerios, etc. This afternoon I wanted to make something that would pack a punch (since neither of them went for the from-scratch, filled-with-veggies-and-whole-wheat-pasta chicken noodle soup I made). I had some quinoa in the fridge, so I combined that with some steel cut oats for a protein and nutrient-filled snack. And it was delicious! Here it is so I don't forget my combination.
Quinoa and Steel Cut Oatmeal

1/2 cup quinoa

1/2 cup steel cut oats

1 tsp cinnamon

2 small apples, cored, peeled, and chopped

a handful of dried cranberries

1 cup milk

1 cup water

1 cup juice

1 tsp vanilla

brown sugar or a drizzle of honey to taste

Mix the first 5 ingredients in a saucepan. Add the milk and water, and stir to combine. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes. Stir often, and add the juice as needed as the quinoa and oats absorb the water and milk. I ended up needing the entire extra cup of liquid. You basically don't want it to dry out before the quinoa and oats are finished cooking. After it is done, remove it from the heat, and stir in the vanilla. Give it a taste at this point. Since I used all-natural, no-sugar-added juice, it needed a little sweetening still. I chose brown sugar, but honey or agave nectar would be just as good.

*This recipe would also work in a slow cooker. Just mix the dry ingredients, then add 2 cups of milk and 2 cups of water. Place in a bowl that fits inside the bowl of the slow cooker, then pour water in between the bowls so it steams in a water bath. Cook on low heat for 8-10 hours.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Alicia, thanks so much for this recipe. I've made it several times when I know I need some hearty, good nutrition and want something simple! I've added all kinds of fruit & toppings and enjoyed it for lunches and even dinner! Thank you!! Liz Eaton