It all started with Quinoa

There’s no doubt that Quinoa may be the funniest food name ever…

But it’s pretty darn good for you!

Today, rather than blab on about ALL the health benefits of this new ‘super food’, I thought I’d share my Quinoa discovery story with you.

And it starts with my son…

He’s 4. I love him to bits but he has moments when he really tests my patience and drives me crazy. I call it the feral fours which I’m sure parents of similar aged children will agree with.

One of our major battles happen around food choices. Guess what Master 4 has wanted for EVERY meal over the past 12 months…

Weet-bix, porridge and bananas. How boring is that?! And no, he didn’t always get want he wanted although it would have been much easier to give into those tantrums.

But something amazing happened the other day!

After months of battles and motherly appeals for Master 4 to ‘just try something new please’, he agreed to try Quinoa. I was so excited I almost dropped the bowl as I went to clap my hands in acknowledgement of hearing ‘yes’ come out of his little mouth!

So what is this magical Quinoa he said ‘yes’ to?

Quinoa, also known as a pseudo-cereal, is a grain crop which contains edible seeds. It is high in protein, is gluten free and is drought tolerant so is readily available in Australia. The Quinoa seeds contain the essential amino acid Lysine, and contains calcium, phosphorus and iron.

My favourite way to eat Quinoa is to substitute it for rice, but you can also use it in salads or for extra flavouring cook it in stock.

Here are some handy Quinoa tips:

  • Always rinse your Quinoa before cooking. It has a layer of saponin on its exterior which makes the Quinoa rather bitter. But a vigorous wash in fresh water strips off the saponin and the cooked seeds have a much better flavour. I wish I learnt this 2 years ago!
  • Soak your Quinoa before cooking. I’m not sure if this really makes a difference as I was told to do this…but I did, and Master 4 ate it, so I’ll continue to do so.

Do you have Quinoa Questions?

Feel free to contact me if you want recipes using Quinoa or if you want more advice about this magical food that 4 year olds will eat!

Don’t be scared to try new things, and don’t worry if your children turn their noses up at it first time around. You never know, they might surprise you.

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