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Winter Quinoa Pilaf

February 7, 2010

We’re not vegetarian, but if we were, I think this would be a staple of our vegetarian diet.  It is really, really tasty.  It is perfect for a cold winter day.  It’s hearty and filling – what more could you want?  The currants provide a nice sweetness and a good contrast to the nuttiness of the quinoa and pine nuts.  If you are not a huge brussels sprouts fan, this recipe may convert you.

If you want to change it up with a little meat – I think this might be good with some chicken apple sausage.  Or it would make a great side for your favorite chicken, turkey… steak, pork… okay anything.

Doesn’t this make you hungry?  Oh, one more thing, don’t be shy with the salt – it brings out a buttery flavor in the dish.

Hearty Winter Veggie Pilaf

Featured in Rachael Ray Magazine, February 2010


1 1/2 cups quinoa
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound mushrooms, preferably shiitake, sliced
3 scallions, white and green parts thinly sliced separately
1/2 cup pine nuts
1/4 cup dried currants or cranberries
Salt and pepper
1 pound brussels sprouts, quartered lengthwise
1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley


Prepare the quinoa as directed on the package.  In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat.  Add the mushrooms and cook until lightly browned, 6 to 8 minutes.  Stir in the scallion whites, pine nuts and dried currants; season with salt and pepper.  Cook until the nuts are light golden, about 2 minutes; transfer to a bowl.  In the same skillet, heat another 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-hit heat.  Add the brussels sprouts and 1/8 cup water; season with salt and pepper.  Cook until crisp-tender, about 8 minutes.  Toss with the mushroom mixture, quinoa, scallion greens, parsley and remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil.  Season with salt and pepper.

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