Saturday, September 24, 2011

Broccoli-Quinoa Bake

This is a different take on the usual cheesy broccoli-rice casserole that we all know and love. I got the idea/recipe from a great blog, Eating Well, Living Thin. I modified it a bit according to what I had and what might add more complex flavors. It is a great healthy side dish, but since quinoa is a complete protein it also makes for a wonderful main dish. You could add some shredded chicken, or use a different vegetable-based "Cream of..." soup if you wanted to make it completely vegetarian (I couldn't find a cream of broccoli soup at my grocery store). I used pretty much all fat-free products except the cheese and it turned out really well, but you can use low/full fat mayo and sour cream if desired.

Broccoli-Quinoa Bake
modified from here

1 10-oz can 98% Fat Free Cream of Chicken Soup
1/4 cup mayo
1/4 cup sour cream
2 Tbsp milk
1 cup shredded cheese of choice (I did half mozzarella, half cheddar blend)
1 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp black pepper
dash of nutmeg
2 cups cooked broccoli florets
1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa
Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and coat a baking dish with cooking spray (9x13 or 8x8 pans work, depending on if you are using it as a side or main dish).

In a large bowl, combine the first 7 ingredients (through nutmeg) and stir well. Add broccoli and cooked quinoa* and mix until combined. Pour into prepared dish. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan and bake for 35-40 minutes or until bubbly and golden around the edges - check at about 30 minutes to make sure it doesn't burn.

Makes 4 generous 1-cup servings, or 8 1/2-cup servings.

*To cook quinoa, measure out 3/4 cup uncooked and rinse it in a fine-mesh sieve until water runs clear. Combine in a small saucepan with 1 1/2 cups water and a helping of salt. Bring to a boil, then turn heat to low and cover. Simmer for about 18-20 minutes until the white ring is visible and all the liquid is absorbed. Fluff with a fork and use.

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