Our microwave was recently the casualty of an electricity incident in our apartment building. Instead of immediately replacing it, we decided to go microwave-free for a few weeks as an experiment. It’s actually been really easy to do, and looking back, it seems silly that we let such an unnecessary piece of kitchen equipment take up so much counter space. Counter space is like gold in tiny kitchens. With the microwave gone, there are now two comfortable prep areas in the kitchen, which makes cooking together so much easier. I’d take that over a microwave any day.
Another upside to this new normal is that I now get so much more use out of these little Le Creuset baking dishes. I always kept them around because I thought they were cute, but now we use them almost every day to reheat leftovers in the oven. And guess what? Leftovers taste a million times better when cooked in the oven rather than the microwave. Who knew?
All of this is to say that this quinoa dish reheats very well in the oven, making a tasty lunch the day after you make this for dinner. It’s one of our favorite ways to eat quinoa. You toast up uncooked quinoa with some chopped shallots and a dash of white wine before cooking it in veggie broth. When the quinoa is fully cooked, you stir in roasted garlic, chopped tomato, fresh spinach, and a little cheese. It’s really, really, really good.
Quinoa with roasted garlic, spinach, and tomato
Adapted from Cooking Light
2 whole garlic heads
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped shallots
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed and drained
2 tablespoons white wine
2 cups veggie broth
2 cups fresh baby spinach leaves
1 small tomato, chopped
2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
½ teaspoon salt
1. First, you need to get the garlic roasted. Remove as much papery skin as you can from each head. Then, cut each head in half crosswise. Make sure each clove is exposed (sometimes I have to do a little trimming here and there). Wrap both heads in aluminum foil and bake at 350 for about an hour. Let the roasted garlic cool for a little bit and then squeeze out the individual cloves (which will be kind of pulpy and paste-like at this point) and set them in a small bowl for later.
2. Now, make the quinoa. Heat oil in saucepan. Add shallots and red pepper; cook for a minute. Add quinoa and cook for about 4 minutes, stirring constantly. Carefully add the wine and cook for an additional 2 or 3 minutes, stirring constantly, until all the liquid is absorbed. Then, add the veggie broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for about 15 minutes, until the liquid is absorbed.
3. Remove the quinoa from the heat, and then stir in the garlic pulp, spinach, tomato, cheese, and salt. Eat and enjoy!