Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Quinoa Vegetable Soup

This recipe is for a hearty tomato-based vegetable soup filled with quinoa. I created this recipe trying to cram as much protein as I could into my diet, and as you know, quinoa is the grain with the highest form of vegetable protein.
I like to eat this grain, and I should probably eat more of it. I don't love it though. I eat it because it's good for me, and it feels in this soup as if it's a good substitute for carbs that I am continually craving in this cold weather we have been having lately.
Quinoa is available in almost every grocery store and health food store. It is even available at Costco. It keeps forever, as long as you keep it dry and stored in a coolish place.  
Passata is just pureed tomatoes, generally Italian tomatoes, but I like it because it's thick and rich, and already pureed (one less dish for me to wash). Oh, and the seeds are strained out too. Plus, I prefer tomatoes in glass - remember that story going around a while ago about BPA in the lining of tomato cans?? Anyway, when I can, I buy tomatoes in glass. Just one of those things. If you can't get a bottle of passata, just use a 28oz can of whole Italian-style tomatoes and puree it yourself, or buy a can of crushed tomatoes. 
The soup is suprisingly delicious, even my husband liked it, so that's an accomplishment too. It's super easy to make, and everyone who likes tomato soup will enjoy this. To be honest, if you had your eyes closed, you wouldn't even be able to tell there was quinoa in this soup. Your kids will eat it too, a bonus any time.

Quinoa Vegetable Soup
makes 4-6 serves

1 tablespoon canola oil
2 onions, diced
1 stalk celery, diced
1 carrot, peeled and diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup quinoa
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 bottle (720ml) passata
4 cups chicken stock (or vegetable stock)
1 & 1/2 cups frozen peas

Heat oil in a large saucepan, add onions, celery, carrot, galric, quiona, thyme and salt. Cook gently until vegetables are softened, and onion is translucent.
Add passata and chicken stock, bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer about 20 minutes until quinoa is cooked. Stir through frozen peas, season to taste with salt & pepper.


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