Breakfast Quinoa

I went to college at Marquette University. “Food trends” seemed to love our sorority house. Quinoa was the longest lived food trend. One of my dear friends would eat quinoa every night- with feta and peppers, I have to give her credit, I think she started the quinoa aphi food trend.

When I saw this recipe for breakfast quinoa- I had to try it! I am not only in a breakfast rut, but I am so sick of oatmeal. I binged on oatmeal everyday for breakfast one year. This breakfast quinoa provides the same “full all morning feeling” as oatmeal, but has a more dense texture. Side note: Cheerios do not provide the “full all morning” feeling… I swear, I eat Cheerios and am STARVING about 30 minutes later!

There are so many “topping” combinations, I love strawberry and bananas together.

Ingredients:

Serves 3

1/2 cup dry quinoa*

3/4 cup skim milk

3/4 tsp cinnamon

1 1/2 tsp vanilla

3 anise stars (optional)**

pinch of salt

1 banana

1/4 cup almond slices

1/2 cup strawberries

1 tbsp flax seed (optional)

1/2 tbsp brown sugar

Directions:

*Quinoa directions: I bought my quinoa at the farmers market in bulk… it was not pre-rinsed. If quinoa is not rinsed, it leaves a bitter residue and can affect the taste. I also roasted my quinoa before I rinsed it. In a medium frying pan, on medium heat, stir quinoa until the quinoa starts to smell fragrant and the quinoa starts to pop- about 4 min. Then rinse and strain.

1. Over medium heat, combine milk, vanilla, cinnamon, salt, and anise stars. Bring to a low boil. If you use anise stars, remove before adding the quinoa.

2. Stir in quinoa and cover. Make sure you have a deep pot. I started with a small pot, and quickly had to transfer into a pot with a deeper base due to the small quinoa bits and milk mixture bubbling out the sides!

3. Bring heat down to low and let it simmer for about 15 minutes, till the milk is soaked into the quinoa.

4. Stir in brown sugar and strawberries. Let sit for a few minutes.

5. Stir in bananas, almonds, and flax seed. I personally like warm bananas (that sounds dirty… but go with it) so I added mine to the whole pot, but if you perform firm bananas (again, dirty) then add right before you eat.

I roasted the almonds and flax seed- use the same frying pan that roasted the quinoa and add the almonds first- roast them on med/low heat- only for a few minutes- you do not want to burn the almond slices. Remove the almonds and add the flax seeds- roast for a few minutes- it is hard to tell because flax seed is already a dark tan color- I recommend stirring the flax seed on med/low heat for about 3 min.

**Anise stars have a licorice taste. They are typically used in Eastern Chinese cuisines. In Atlanta we have this amazing International Farmers Market and the spices are so cheap! I had picked up some anise stars and find myself throwing them in random dishes to help boost flavor- I use them in a granola receipe. Will share at a later date. They smell delish and I love their shape!

Enjoy!

Idea- Courtesy of How Sweet Eats

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