A simple vegetarian recipe for quinoa and mushroom pilaf makes the perfect side dish or lunch. | livinglou.com

Quinoa (keen-wah) is something that I’ve heard a lot about, but have never tried … despite having some in the pantry for months. It’s an interesting, ancient grain that has a rather unique texture, and it’s really good for you! The texture is kind of crunchy and soft at the same time. At first I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I’m pleasantly surprised. The flavor of quinoa is mild and nutty, which is easily adaptable. This week’s Meatless Monday quinoa pilaf is filling and works well as a main course, but it would also make a wonderful side to a nice roasted chicken.

After researching about quinoa and it’s flavor, I thought that mushrooms would be a nice compliment to it’s flavor. I have to say that after eating this quinoa mushroom pilaf, I’m definitely a big fan of quinoa and can’t wait to try more recipes!

If you’re on the hunt for a dish that is relatively simple to make, and yields scrumptious results then I highly recommend this one!

Quinoa Mushroom Pilaf (serves 2-4)
recipe inspired by: Food Network

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil
4 oz white mushrooms, quartered
1 cup quinoa
1/4 tsp dried thyme
1 large clove garlic, crushed
1 bay leaf
freshly ground pepper and salt
1 1/4 cups water
2 tbsp Parmesan cheese

Directions

Heat up olive oil in a in a saucepan and add your quartered mushrooms, cooking over medium/medium-high heat for about 5 minutes or until slight softened. Add in your clove of garlic, cooking until fragrant, about a minute.

Be sure to rinse your quinoa properly in cold water before adding to the mushrooms. Once rinsed, add quinoa and dried thyme to saucepan, toasting for a minute and mixing around with the mushrooms. It should become rather fragrant. Add in salt and pepper to taste, (be careful with the salt as we will be adding in Parmesan cheese at the end.)

Add water and bay leaf and bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat and simmer for 9-11 minutes. Once cooking time is up, fluff with a fork and add in the two tbsp of Parmesan cheese, let sit for a couple of minutes before serving!

It really is very simple and delicious, try it out!

– Lou

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