Cheesy Quinoa bowls with Grissini crunch – a delicious, healthy meal with added veg.
It’s not summer yet guys.
We’re so close I’m almost ready to put the winter coats and scarves away and venture into the garden with my trowel.
Not quite yet though.
I’m going to get a couple more comforting, warming dishes in before I go crazy with the summer salads.
To tell you the truth, I’ll probably be making these types of cosy, warm dishes all through summer anyway.
If anyone’s going to be dishing up some Guinness Beef Stew or a Lamb Massaman curry on a hot summers evening, it’s probably going to be me. I love this kind of comfort food too much to ignore it for several months a year!
It just means I need to get the fan blowing and an extra-large glass of cold lager poured to go with it. I’m sure I can manage that…
These veggie, quinoa bowls may look filling and wintry, but they’re such a tasty and healthy lunch. The easy-cheesy-grissini (oh I should be a poet!) crunch on top is a simple mix of crushed breadsticks and cheese, sprinkled on at the end, and placed in a hot oven for a few minutes.
The quinoa bowl itself, you might be surprised to hear, doesn’t contain tomato to get that lovely orange-reddish colour. It’s actually a mix of carrots and red peppers.
I had some fun trying to work out how to cook the quinoa in the with the veg and stock, and then puree the veg without whizzing up the quinoa to a bowl of sludge.
Here’s the trick:
Yep, the quinoa is placed in a sieve which is lowered in the stock/veg pan. The sieve is then lifted out so the veg can be pureed into a silky soup, before adding the quinoa back in with a cup and a half of mature chedder.
The result is a lovely, very thick soup with that beautiful quinoa bite.
The crunchy topping finishes it off perfectly!
Quinoa bowls with grissini crunch Recipe:
Quinoa bowls with grissini crunch
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 medium onions peeled and sliced
- 3 red peppers chopped
- 5 medium sized carrots peeled and chopped
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1.5 litres stock made with 5x veg stock cubes or 1 heaped tbsp vegetable bouillon for gluten free
- 220 g quinoa
- 200 g mature cheddar cheese grated
- Good pinch of salt and pepper
- 8 grissini sticks crumbled roughly - you want to have some big chunks too (use gluten free grissini if required)
- A few chopped up chives to garnish
- Heat the oil in a large pan, add the onion and a pinch of salt and cook on very low for 10 minutes - stirring every couple of minutes. Cooking them this long will make them very soft and sweet. Add in the peppers and carrots, cumin and paprika, give it a stir and cook for a further couple of minutes.
- Add in the stock then place a metal sieve in the stock. Fill the sieve with the quinoa so it cooks separately from the veg. Bring to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Whilst the soup is simmering, preheat the oven to 220c/425f.
- After 20 minutes, take the soup off the heat, lift out the quinoa and place in a bowl. Blend the soup using a stick blender, then stir in the quinoa. Add in the 3/4 of the cheese and a good pinch of salt and pepper and stir until the cheese has melted.
- Ladle the soup out in bowls, top with the crushed grissini and sprinkle with the reserved cheese. Place in the hot oven for 5 minutes to melt and brown the cheese.
- Serve sprinkled with chopped chives (and caution your soup-eaters that the bowls will be very hot!)