Light Lemon Pepper Quinoa

A recent find:

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Kale chips! The taste was a big “meh”. They had a soggy texture. I like my kale chips crispy. The spices gave the chips a smoked taste, which is unlike the kinds I’ve tried in the States. But I’d rather crunch through them, not chew. Maybe I’ll make my own soon.

While I was munching away on the kale chips, I was also making a side dish. Turkey doesn’t have quinoa, except for the imported kind. And since most things are locally-sourced around here, it was a huge surprise to see one of my usual staples hiding in my local grocery store. From Italy.

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I love quinoa, but I am not a huge fan of overly-flavored quinoa. Usually, I cook it with a little salt and call it a day, but sometimes a fragrant touch gives it an oomph without the clouding effects of numerous vegetable, spice or oil additions.

Lemon Pepper Quinoa

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Ingredients:

– 1 tbsp lemon zest

– 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

– 1/2 tsp salt

– 1/4 tsp lemon pepper (or just regular pepper)

– 1 shallot (I used 4 abnormally small shallots), diced

– 1 cup quinoa

– 2.5 cups water

– lemon zest for garnish

Servings: 3-4

Directions:

Let a medium-sized pot head to medium.

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Zest the lemon.

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Add the salt to the lemon zest and smear into the table surface with the side of a knife, allowing all the juices of the lemon zest to release more flavor. The salt will break down the cell walls and extract the juice of the zest.

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Dice the shallots.

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In a heated pot, add the olive oil, lemon zest, and shallots.

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Sautee for 2-3 minutes.

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Add the quinoa and mix until well combined.

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Add the lemon pepper in this step, just before the water.

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Add the water and cover the pot until the mixture reaches a boil, then reduce the temperature to low, allowing it to simmer until finished.

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Serve.

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Add more lemon zest for garnish and additional flavor.

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Voila!

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Bon Appetit!

xo Aylin

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