Quinoa Nutrition, Gluten Free And Much More

Quinoa Nutrition Article – Guest Article by Shanna Ohmes

Did you know the Incas valued not only gold as a metal, but also a golden grain? Actually, it’s not a true grain, but a seed classified in the pseudocereal family. Quinoa (keen wah) is the seed of the goosefoot plant and rich in nutrients. The Incas have used this food in their diet for 6,000 years.

Quinoa is grown in the high altitudes of the Andes Mountains. It is also being grown in Canada and the United States, but most quinoa is imported from Bolivia, Chile and Peru. It can only be grown at high elevations.

The Incas valued quinoa second only to the potato for nutrition. Spanish explorers and colonists destroyed the quinoa crops and forced the Incas to stop growing it. It was kept alive by isolated farmers throughout the last few centuries and grew back into popularity. In the 1980’s, 2 farmers from Colorado learned about quinoa from a Bolivian and began experimenting with it.

Quinoa is an important addition to the diet of those who have trouble digesting grains. Quinoa is gluten free and easy to digest.  It is high in protein, containing all 9 essential amino acids, classified as a complete protein. Vegans and vegetarians will enjoy adding this grain to many recipes. It is rich in manganese, magnesium, iron, tryptophan, copper and phosphorus. It has many of the B vitamins as well.

This super grain package of nutrition is a must for those that suffer from migraine headaches, cardiovascular problems and diabetes. In fact, quinoa was a staple food in the diet of Inca warriors to increase their stamina and endurance. And it tastes wonderful. It has a nutty earthy flavor that can border on bland, so it combines very well in other dishes like casseroles or as a breakfast cereal with honey and fruit.

Here’s how to prepare quinoa:
Just run cool water over the seed to rinse off the saponin coating. Saponin is a soapy bitter compound that protects the seed from birds and insects. Then cook and use as you would rice. A basic recipe is 1 part quinoa to 2 parts broth or water, bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.

©2009 Shanna Ohmes

Want to know more about how to boost your immune system? Traditional diets and how to prepare them, healthy fats, herbal remedies and debunking health myths are some of the subjects covered in The Natural Living Site Newsletter at http://thenaturallivingsite.com.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Shanna_Ohmes

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About Ken

My name is Ken and I am the author of The Quinoa Cookbook. My book is the top selling book worldwide on how to cook quinoa and has over 70 quinoa recipes included.
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6 Responses to Quinoa Nutrition, Gluten Free And Much More

  1. Elsa Evenrud says:

    Thank you for your mails!
    I have had my first meal with quinoa,and it will not be the first and last!

    Greetings from Vestre Toten, Norway

  2. Trish Walker says:

    I am very interested in quinoa for migraine control. I am so excited at the possibility of an effective, delicious natural alternative to drugs.
    I’m looking forward to learning more recipes. I’ve been adding to bread mix, muesli, and I made a slice which did not really work well, but tasted ok.

  3. Marty says:

    I Am hooked, love the taste and I can feel the difference in my Being when I eat Quinoa.

    Infinate Love and Gratitude

  4. valburrell says:

    Great site.. thanks for all the info.. am sending it on to all my friends

  5. Sally Eckert says:

    Thanks for the quinoa info. I use quinoa quite a bit in the same way I use rice. I have celiac disease and also use quinoa as a flour for baking and tortilla-making. It makes great tortillas!

    The quinoa tortillas seem to turn out lighter than the masa harina ones tortillas do for me, although I use the commercial corn tortillas a good bit. I use a little tortilla press that cost $12 in Yuma, Arizona. A friend picked it up for me when he went down there recently to visit his family. (I live in Alaska)

    I cut the zipper off a freezer bag (and open both sides) and put the little round balls of dough inside that, inside the press, and press the dough very nicely. Peel the plastic liner off the top of the flattened tortilla, and then turn it upside on your flattened hand as you carefully remove the liner on the other side of the tortilla. Then cook in a dry (no oil) skillet until the characteristic brown spots appear. Flip, and cook the other side. It only takes about 30-45 seconds per side. Set skillet heat at about the halfway mark.

    I seldom have to roll one again because it gets a hole in it. I think the recipe is this:

    1 c. quinoa flour
    1-1/2 tsp olive oil or softened butter (I use sometimes use 2 tsp)
    1/2 tsp salt
    1/2 c hot water

    Whisk the salt into the flour. Mix in the oil or fat with the flour with your fingers until it is well mixed. Then add the hot water all at once until you have a dough that isn’t sticky. Knead a bit to get the mixture uniform.

    Form 6-8 balls of dough, and put them in a covered bowl to rest for 10 minutes or so. Then you can either roll them out or press them in a tortilla press one at a time. You will have one in a hot skillet (no oil) and one on the press all the time until you finish. Keep the unused dough balls in a bowl covered with a plate or piece of plastic as you work so they don’t dry out.

    The recipe calls for a clove of garlic added to the mixture, along with some chopped cilantro. I didn’t use that because I use tortillas for sweet applications (like jam) and as an accompaniment to soups, too. I make an Indian garam masala that I use very frequently in preparing stir-fries and curries (and even scrambled eggs, etc.), and I add a pinch of that to the dough just to give it some flavoring.

  6. Margaret Schneider says:

    Thank you so very much for your wonderful information
    on Quinoa. We love it as a rice replacement, also in salads,
    soups and stews. For breakfast I use the flaked Quinoa
    for a cooked cereal; 1/3 cup of flakes, and I cup water
    along with dried cranberries, some cinnamon (about 1/4 tsp.)
    and 1/2 Tbs.coconut oil. Cook in microwave (high) for 3
    minutes. It is so yummy!
    One question: how does one get Quinoa Flour?
    Buy it at a health food store, or grind it at home.

    Keep up the good work.

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