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April 17, 2014: Wendy’s Surprising Breakfast

April 17, 2014

Wendy's QuinoaI enjoy the unexpected perk of having the owner of the company I work for, being not only an excellent cook, but very generous with his creations. The other day, he offered his most delicious veggie lasagna and a Hungarian borscht (his addition of paprika and cabbage making it Hungarian) for lunch. I welcomed and enjoyed both, but I was most intrigued with the dish he did not offer. “What’s the quinoa dish?” I asked. Jim made a kind of gagging face and replied, “Oh. That’s Wendy’s breakfast.”

Jim is considered to be quite adventuresome when it comes to food. If you remember, he was the one that once prepared “Boar’s Head.” It seems Jim will try anything once, but he also has specific things, that once tried and disliked, are stricken from his palate forever! Wendy, his wife and the company’s co-owner, is more of a middle-of-the-road culinary adventurer. Knowing not very many people who have even tried quinoa….and never for breakfast, I had to follow-up.

Wendy’s Quinoa Breakfast is simplicity itself: cooked quinoa, chilled, and yoghurt added. Fruit and nuts optional. As easy as oatmeal, yet far more healthy. Wendy says she switched to quinoa, because she wanted a lower glycemic index, higher protein, and lower fat than oatmeal. She realized that a lot of traditional American breakfast is so much “junk food” (eggs, pancakes, processed cereal, etc.) at the same time she  found how important breakfast is to her. She finds this quinoa dish to be filling, but also light. It easily lasts her to lunch, and makes her “more focused” and her day “more complete.” She tries to have this dish 5-6X a week.

Of course, I could not help to make my own version, but this comes very close to what Wendy had made. Wendy adds flax seed to this dish as well (which I did not….but only because I forgot that I had some at the time of cooking.)

Wendy’s Quinoa Breakfast
Wash 1C. Red Quinoa and add to 1.25C. H2O. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork. Chill.

I added 1/4C. crasins half way through the simmering. A greek yoghurt laced with honey seemed right. I topped it with a sprinkling of cardamom and toasted pecans.

I found this dish to be as tasty and rewarding as Wendy had made it out to be. Wendy made the mistake of giving Jim the cooked quinoa before adding the yoghurt, hence his “face.” I know very few people who can take their quinoa straight like this. Wonderful as a side dish or mixed with other foods, quinoa has a distinctly “earthy” flavor. Since making Wendy’s breakfast, I have found other quinoa breakfast dishes. One, by another fellow-food blogger is “Quinoa Grits” which is cooked white quinoa, lightly spiced and fried in oil.

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