It’s Meat Free Monday once again, instead of making a dish that goes with rice we are making a “rice” to go with all the other meat free dishes that we have. And here I go again, making a fried rice without a rice. It sounds weird right, but if you’re familiar with vegetable rice then you know what I mean. Have you heard of Cauliflower Fried “Rice”? That sort of thing, its basically chopping down the cauliflower into super fine almost grain size pieces that it almost looks like a rice grain, but it’s still not rice. This Quinoa Fried “Rice” is easier than that, you just have to cook the Quinoa and then chop the vegetables that goes with it, but the concept is almost the same. Fried rice without a rice grain.
This Quinoa Fried is my new favorite rice replacement for days when feel that I have to balance all the sweets and the carbs that I had been eating. I love my sweets so, I cannot give it up for now but I can eat other healthier stuff to compensate for it. Not that it will totally make up for it, but I’m just saying I’m not ready to give up my sweet addiction, at least not yet. I’m not new to Quinoa as I had been having it before as salad so making this Quinoa Fried Rice as rice is something that I enjoyed a lot.
Quinoa, a Seed NOT a Grain
A little facts about Quinoa. Do you know that Quinoa is not a type of grain? I used to think that it is a type of grain, until I watched this Netflix show called “Cook Your Ass Off”. Have you seen or heard about that show? It’s a healthy cooking show where the chefs will have to recreate a healthier version of unhealthy favorite snacks and meals. The nutritionist judge mentioned in one of the episode that most people (that includes me) think that Quinoa is a grain, but it’s not because it is actually a seed. Being a seed, it is rich in protein and also a good source of fiber and these are only two among the many other benefits of Quinoa.
How to Make It
Back to this dish, it’s simple and the steps are just like when making a fried rice. You need to sauté the garlic and onion first until fragrant and translucent, don’t let it get too brown or crispy. Then goes in the vegetables, you can use whatever veggies you like and continue cooking until vegetables are soft to your liking. I was hoping to add green peas but I run out of them, that would be a nice addition too if you have it. You can whisk and mix the egg, but for this one instead of mixing the beaten egg to the Quinoa like what I did with the Cauliflower Fried Rice, I thought small strings of scrambled egg would be nice for a nice change. Make a scrambled egg and cut it thinly or chop it if that’s easier for you, then mix it with the “rice”. Season to taste, add a little bit of kick by adding touch of chili flakes, it’s totally optional but for me spicy spices never failed to make the dish taste better. So, you want to give it a try? Let’s get started!
- 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic – minced
- 1/4 cup 35g onions – chopped
- 1/4 cup 60g carrots – diced
- 1/2 cup red and green all peppers (mix)
- 1/2 salt ( I used fine salt)
- 1/8 black pepper
- 1/2 tsp chili flakes
- 2 eggs – scrambled and cut thinly
- Cook Quinoa as per package instructions. Set aside.
- Add oil to a heated pan, then add garlic and onion and sauté until fragrant. Add carrots, bell peppers, salt, black pepper and chilli flakes. Sauté until carrots are soft.
- Add in cooked quinoa and cook for another 3 minutes or until the “rice” is slightly dry out of moisture but not crispy.
- In a separate pan, cook the scrambled eggs. Take out of the pan and roll into a log shape and cut thinly or chop into small pieces.
- Add cut eggs into the quinoa. Season to taste and adjust as needed.
Serves 2 -3
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