Monday, May 7, 2012

Quinoa Wrap

Quinoa was once referred to as the "Mother Grain" by the Incas and when mixed with fat and rolled into a powerful little ball was known to the Incan Army as "war balls."  It is no wonder this little seed (often mistaken for a grain) is considered a superfood.  Luckily for us, it is cheap and can be bought at almost any store, including my beloved Whole Foods and Central Market.  Quinoa comes in different colors and can be cooked, eaten raw when soaked, sprouted, and easily grown in the garden.  Therefore, I have a love affair with quinoa.  What's best about this light, fluffy and nutty flavored little seed is that it brings with it a taste of the exotic and hint of history.  Biting into a mouthful of this superseed invokes images of the Incas and a time when food was valued, worshiped even, for it's mystical medicinal and powerful healing abilities.  Eat quinoa and you will feel more beautiful, more energetic, and more akin to an Incan warrior than ever before!  Unless you plan on some human sacrifice or brutal warrior induced bloodshed, Quinoa will give you the energy needed to power though a modern day, a warrior-esque yoga session, or can simply be enjoyed for its YUM factor.  Try this wrap for a quick and easy lunch.

What you will need:
1 large leafed green - I've used swiss chard with the lower stem removed
1/2 cooked quinoa
1 carrot - shredded and tossed in lime juice
1/4 red bell pepper - julienned
1 julienned Persian cucumber (use organic and leave the skin on - there are many nutrients in the skin)
1/2 tsp chia seed
1 tsp raw sunflower seeds
1/2 tsp nutritional yeast (for the flavor and the B12)
1 tbsp organic hummus (or your favorite flavor of hummus or tahini)

Your julienned peppers should look like this is similar in size.  If they are slicked to large, it will be difficult to roll the wrap.

To cook quinoa: add to pot 1:2 ratio of quinoa to water.  This recipe calls for 1/2 cup cooked quinoa.  The quinoa will expand in size when cooked so I kept the leftover for a side salad.  To the pot 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa and 1 cup filtered water.  Bring to boil, reduce heat, cover, and let cook 10 to 15 minutes or until the water is absorbed. Fluff with fork.  LET COOL before adding to your wrap or your dark greens will get mushy.

Lay your large piece of swiss chard on a flat surface, spread hummus and then lay your ingredients along the middle of the leaf similar to preparing a sushi roll.  Something like this:
then ROLL TIGHTLY, this takes practice and you will get better each time!  Just remember to be gentle with your wrap otherwise it might form a small rip/hole/break.

Once you have your roll, slice down the middle for a nice lunch wrap or cut in thin slices for pinwheels to share!  Then enjoy!!


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