I got my first taste of quinoa under a bridge. Well it was the under the I-83 viaduct at the Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar. The Mushroom Stand sells a mushroom and quinoa dish that is virtuous yet meaty (although there is no actual meat) and satisfying. I came across the recipe for Cozy Quinoa Casserole and adapted it. Again, I feel virtuous eating it. But the flavor is what keeps me coming back for more.
1 large onion, peeled and diced
1 tbsp. olive oil
8 cremini (or white) mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 small butternut squash – peeled, seeded, and diced
2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 lb. ground chicken
1 tsp. ground thyme
1 tsp. sea salt
¼ tsp. ground black pepper
2 cups chicken stock
1½ cups quinoa, rinsed
⅓ cup parsley, minced
1½ cups shredded Mexican cheese blend (or cheddar or Monterey jack)
- Preheat oven to 350º F.
- In a skillet, sauté onion in olive oil on medium high heat for 2 to 3 minutes or until translucent.
- Add mushrooms, squash, and garlic and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Add chicken, breaking it into small pieces as it browns, about 3 to 4 minutes.
- Add ground thyme, salt, pepper, stock, and quinoa and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Spray a 13×9×2 inch baking pan with non-stick spray.
- Transfer ingredients from into the baking pan.
- Mix in parsley and ½ cup cheese.
- Sprinkle remaining 1 cup cheese on top of casserole.
- Bake in oven for 30 to 35 minutes.
- Use ground chicken breast or vegetable crumbles
- Use low-fat or fat-free cheese
- Use unsalted stock