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Quinoa Risotto

Risotto was the first recipe I ever mastered. I was so proud of myself, I could make a recipe without even looking at the directions once. And to this day, it’s my husbands favorite dish that I make, I’m pretty good at it.
And I’ve recently had this fascination with quinoa (you pronounce it Keen-Wa). It’s a pretty amazing little grain, it has protein, fiber, iron, and even has some magical powers. Well, sort of. It is credited with preventing migraines, assisting in rebuilding torn tissues, lowering blood pressure and even promoting fat burning. Pretty much something I want to put in my body on a daily basis. 
I make quinoa salads for lunch at least once a week. Chop up whatever vegetables I can find, mix with a 1/2 cup quinoa and some balsamic and I’m set. Even keeps me full for hours.
This dish is a mix of those two loves, risotto and quinoa. To be quite honest, I prefer the rice version, but as far as a quinoa dish goes, this was pretty great. With all of those fabulous attributes that are in quinoa, I might as well call this Magical Risotto. 
Quinoa Risotto 
3 cups chicken broth
3 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 tbs chopped shallots
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1½ cups Quinoa, rinsed and dried
1/4 cup dry white wine (like Savignon Blanc)
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup heavy cream
Salt and Pepper
  • Place the chicken broth in a sauce pan and bring to a mild simmer, keeping to warm, but not boiling.
  • In a pan, toast the dry quinoa, stirring constantly, until you can smell a nutty aroma, about 3 minutes. 
  • In a separate pot, add the butter and allow to melt over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook until opaque, but don’t allow to brown. Add the garlic and cook until you can smell them, about 20 seconds
  • Stir in the quinoa, cooking until it is completely coated with butter, don’t allow to brown. About 2 minutes.
  • Add the wine and cook until the pan begins to dry, stirring frequently. About 6 minutes.
  • Add a ladle full (about 2/3 cups) of broth into the quinoa. Stir frequently until the broth is almost dry, and then add another ladle full and repeat. This process should take about 15-20 minutes. Don’t leave the risotto while it’s cooking, the rice on the bottom of the pan burns easily. If you run out of broth, just use hot water the same way you would broth. If you have made risotto before, just know that the quinoa version will require less broth. 
  • Once your risotto is cooked through (taste it to verify that the quinoa is cooked), turn heat to low and add the cheese, cream and salt and pepper to taste. Risotto should be soft and wet, not dry like typical quinoa. It should be firm enough to be served as a side on a plate, but soft enough to giggle when the plate is shaken.

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23 Responses to Quinoa Risotto

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