Thursday, October 1, 2009

Lemongrass quinoa pilaf recipe

lemongrass quinoa pilaf, adapted from Didi Emmons's Vegetarian Planet
I've been neglecting some of my favorite grains.  Millet and quinoa - I'm extremely sorry that you haven't played much of a role in my life for the past couple of months.  I've been eating so much local corn that I haven't had time for you.  I've missed you, though, and I would like to welcome you back to my life if you're willing to give me another chance.  Don't worry, you won't have to compete with any local grains until next summer. 

I made quinoa first, and used a recipe from "Vegetarian Planet" that combined quinoa with lemongrass, tofu, broccoli, and red peppers.  This was a light, but quite filling dinner, and it was nice to have quinoa again.  The texture contrasts were really cool - everything from the crunch of broccoli and peppers to the softness of tofu.  I wish I would have marinated the tofu in something (perhaps a simple tamari, garlic, and ginger mixture) because that would have enhanced the flavors a bit.  Even without this, though, I enjoyed it and won't mind eating the massive amounts of leftovers.

Well, September is over, so I guess I'll have to wrap up my month of cooking from "Vegetarian Planet".  By far, my favorite recipe was the masa cakes with salsa verdeJulia was right, these things are amazingly delicious (perhaps dangerously delicious).  I also loved the smokin' black beans and eggplant and cherry tomato saute, and I'm sure that I will be making more of both.  This quinoa was really good as well, but didn't knock my socks off as much as the rest did.  I'm disappointed that I didn't get a chance to make more from the book this month, but I'm sure that I will be pulling it off the shelf very frequently.  After trying more of the recipes, this book has quickly moved into one of my top 5 favorite cookbooks (don't ask me to rank them, though).

Lemongrass quinoa pilaf (adapted from "Vegetarian Planet" by Didi Emmons)
(Printable version)

1 Tbsp peanut oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tbsp minced ginger
2 Tbsp minced lemongrass (fresh or frozen)
1 tsp ground Sichuan pepper (or 1/4 tsp ground ginger, 1/8 tsp ground cloves, and 1/2 tsp black pepper)
1 lb firm tofu, cubed
1 bunch broccoli, cut into florets and small pieces of stems
1/4 cup water
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
6 cups cooked quinoa
salt to taste

Heat oil, garlic, and ginger over medium heat in a large skillet.  After about a minute, add the lemongrass, Sichuan pepper, and tofu, and cook on medium-high heat, stirring frequently, for about 4 min.  Add the broccoli and water, cover skillet, reduce heat to low, and let cook for 7 min.  Then stir in bell pepper and quinoa and season with salt.  Serves 5.


Diana H said...

This sounnds delicious. I love quinoa. I have some lemongrass too, so sounds like combination to try.

Julia said...

It does sound like a great recipe! And glad you enjoyed the book so much. I take a modicum of pride in that.

Tasty Eats At Home said...

Interesting! I have leftover lemongrass (bought too much for a dish earlier in the week), so maybe I should make this!

Katie said...

Diana and Alta - If you have lemongrass lying around, I highly recommend trying it!

Julia - You should definitely take pride in it. It's obvious that a lot of work went into this book, and I think that the tasters did a great job ;)

Anonymous said...

Sounds great, and I've got some lemongrass in the fridge that I didn't know what to do with too!

Unknown said...

looks so goood. I loveee quinoa, so easy and delicious. Great for my meatless Wednesday! thanks.

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Noblesville Roofing said...

I love quinoa! We eat it 3-4 times a week! I will definitely have to try this recipe. Thanks for sharing!

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So glad you did the tutorial! I will have to try this soon!