Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Quinoa Pilaf

In my little apartment kitchen there are generally always dishes waiting to be done, largely because I am constantly cooking and baking. I don't mind doing the dishes, but sometimes I just get so tired of it. So you would think that I would try to cut down on the dishes, right? Well, that's easier said than done. Instead I just try to pile them tidier. However, I do have a couple of one-pot recipes and this is one of them. My basic pilaf recipe came from the classic NZ Edmond's cookbook, obviously one of the newer versions because the old ones wouldn't have anything so foreign as this. It's a great student meal because you can make it with any scraps of meat or vegetables that you have, and any sort of stock and rice will do. I used to bake it in a casserole dish in the oven but technically pilaf is supposed to be done on the stove, over low heat. This dish has a million variations and is known by almost as many names, as it's a staple sort of dish from many different countries. It's commonly called pilaf or pilau, and I reckon that spanish paella is also a version of the same thing. I had not made this dish in a very long time when I came across a recipe on another blog for quinoa pilaf, and though that I should give it a try. In the end, however, instead of making that recipe I just added some quinoa to my own recipe, instead of the meat that I would usually add. So now this is pilaf is vegetarian but still packed full of protein!

Rice & Quinoa Pilaf

25 grams butter
1 onion
1/2 cup quinoa (for a normal, non-quinoa pilaf, take away a cup of the stock, and if you want you could add a couple of hundred grams of chopped meat so that you have a source of protein).
1 cup long grain rice (I used brown basmati)
3 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1 cup chopped vegetables
A small handfull of fresh chives, chopped finely
25 grams butter

First of all, in a large saucepan, melt the butter and add the onion, rice and quinoa. Cook, stirring all the time, for two minutes. If you are using meat, add that at this point too. Then pour in the stock and add the vegetables. At this point it will look like soup. This is the point when I used to transfer it to a casserole dish and let it bake for about 30 or 40 minutes at 180 degrees celsius.

However, the other option, and perhaps the more correct option, is to continue to cook pilaf on the stove. Turn the heat down to medium-low and place the lid on the saucepan. Let it simmer for about 30 minutes (you can stir it every now and then if you want, but you don't have to). After about a half hour almost all of the water will have been absorbed. So now you should give it a taste and season it with salt and pepper if need be. Then stir in the chives and the second measure of butter. Place the lid back on the saucepan, remove it from the heat and let it sit for 10 minutes.

That's it, you're finished! In less than an hour you have another filling, one pot meal for those weekday nights when you are starving and feeling lazy.


  1. Thanks for sharing! We are just starting to get into quinoa at our house and am searching for new recipes. Would love for you to share at
    Have a great day!

  2. This looks good, I haven't tried quinoa yet but have been wanting too! I'm a new follower and would love to have you stop by my brand new blog and follow, too:)

  3. Love quinoa! Its so good for you and tastes fabulous! Looks like a great recipe.

  4. Sounds tasty... and love the colors with the carrots. Thanks for sharing

    Dave at


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