Vegetable Quinoa

This particular dish was inspired by a former girlfriend. I had never heard of Quinoa until the summer of 2010, crazy, I know. However, thanks that beautiful woman I got to expand my gourmet tastes. Besides who doesn’t love a woman that adds more garlic to a meal? The beauty of this dish is that it’s possible to adapt it to different seasons by replacing the vegetables when they’re in season.


    1. 2 – tbsp Olive Oil
    2. 2 medium yellow onions, slice ’em thin.
    3. 2 large carrots, cleaned and sliced to 1/2 inch thick
    4. 2 medium red skin potatoes cut into 1/2 cubes
    5. 4 cloves of garlic minced
    6. 4 – cups of chicken stock or broth
    7. 1 1/2 – cups of chopped tomatoes
    8. 1/2 – tsp thyme
    9. 1/2 – tsp basil
    10. 1/2 – tsp pepper
    11. 1/2 – tsp salt
    12. 1 bay leaf
    13. 2 parsnips cleaned and sliced to 1/2 pieces
    14. 1 medium zucchini cut into 1 inch cubes
    15. 1 medium yellow squash cut into 1 inch cubes
    16. 2 – cups of cooked chick peas
    17. 1/4 – cup of dried cranberries
    18. 1 – cup of quinoa


Grab your Dutch oven, preferably about 5 quart size. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over a moderate heat. Add the onions and sauté, shifting them around occasionally until they are golden brown. Add the carrots, potatoes, garlic and continue to cook for a few minutes. Pour in the stock, tomatoes, and spices, along with the bay leaf. Stir it up and bring it to a boil. Then lower the heat and let the veggies simmer for about 5 minutes. Add the parsnips and simmer for about another 3 minutes. Add the zucchini, squash and peas, then (you guessed it) simmer some more, well maybe at least 8 minutes more or until the veggies are tender. Remove from the heat and take out that bay leaf.

Take a 1 1/2 cups off the liquid from the juices and put that into a small saucepan. Add in the cranberries and remaining olive oil. Bring that little concoction to a boil and stir in the quinoa. Remove it from heat and let stand covered until the quinoa absorbs the liquid and is tender.

Cue the screaming guitars and slam! Serve the veggies over the quinoa in a rockin fashion that will fill the tummies of 4 to 6 peeps.

Prep Time: 20 mins. Cook Time: 25 mins. Some Standing Time: 10 mins.

* Organic ingredients are best. Almost any grocer will now carry organic versions of these vegetables, but if you can find them from a local grower it’s all that much better. Same holds true for the spices, organic and fresh is best. There is even organic quinoa that you can get – buy it in bulk as it keeps well in a airtight bag.