Quinoa Paella

Quinoa Paella

Using nutritious and quick-cooking quinoa as a substitute for rice to make a vegan paella, you can have a colorful one-dish meal in a shade over 30 minutes. Colorful, flavorful, and festive, this goes well with Spinach, Orange, and Red Cabbage Salad.

Serves: 6

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 to 4  cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 green bell pepper, cut into 2-inch strips
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into 2-inch strips
  • 2 cups vegetable broth, or 2 cups water with 1 vegetable bouillon cube
  • 1 teaspoon saffron threads, dissolved in
    a small amount of hot water (see Note)
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed in a fine sieve
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme, or 1/2 teaspoon dried
  • 2 cups artichoke hearts (not marinated; either from the supermarket
    olive bar, or one 14-ounce can, drained)
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen green peas, thawed
  • 2 cups diced ripe tomatoes
  • 2 to 3 scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a large, deep skillet or steep-sided stir-fry pan. Add the garlic and bell peppers and sauté over medium-low heat until softened, about 2 to 3 minutes.

Add the broth, saffron, and quinoa. Bring to a simmer and cook, covered, for 15 minutes.

Stir in the artichoke hearts, peas, tomatoes, scallions, and half of the parsley. Check if the quinoa is completely done; if not, add 1/2 cup water. Cook, stirring frequently, just until everything is well heated through, about 5 minutes.

Transfer the quinoa mixture to a large shallow serving container. Sprinkle the remaining parsley over the top and serve at once.

Quinoa Paella2

Note: Can’t find or don’t want to spend the money for saffron? Turmeric is a fine substitute. Use 1 teaspoon.

Variation: Add a cup of sliced brown mushrooms when you add the peppers.

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