Many American cooks are familiar with quinoa, tiny little seeds that can be cooked like grain. Quinoa is certainly good for you, offering more fiber per serving than either brown rice or corn, and also packing a nice little punch of protein. But did you know you can pop it… like popcorn?
All you need to do is place a large pan or pot over medium heat and let it heat up, empty. The depth of the pan or pot doesn’t really matter, but you want to use something wide, with a lot of surface area on the bottom.
After the pan is nice and hot, pour in enough quinoa to coat the bottom of the pan. You don’t need oil – just a hot pan and quinoa.
Cover the pan with a lid and gently shake the pan back and forth. You’ll hear tiny little pops and cracks, sort of like the sound of pouring milk onto crispy rice cereal! When the popping sound tapers off and you smell toasty goodness, remove the pan from the heat and immediately pour the popped quinoa into a bowl (to prevent scorching in the hot pan).
Popped quinoa doesn’t get very big, but still makes a nutty, crunchy snack. I like to sprinkle quinoa “popcorn” over salads and sauteed greens. Use your imagination!
Eat well, be well!