January 10, 2007

Ancient Harvest Quinoa - Gluten Free

I have a variety of gluten- free Quinoa in my pantry. I have Quinoa flakes and flour from Ancient Harvest and organic Quinoa grain from Trader Joe's. I have made exactly one food item from each and didn't explore further. I really enjoyed the Quinoa with garlic and vegetables that I made with the grains. Although, my kids... I've read that you have to offer new foods to kids at least seven times before they will like it, that leaves six times to go.

NASA is experimenting with different varieties of Quinoa for growing in space. The nutritional profile of quinoa is excellent as it contains protein, fiber, calcium, etc. You can see the nutritional profile of quinoa at Ancient Harvest's website. www.quinoa.net

I chose my box of Ancient Harvest Quinoa Flakes as my test subject. Ancient Harvest has several recipes on the back of the box that seemed like they had potential. One was for Quinoa peanut butter cookies and the other for Quinoa banana muffins. Since, I've never made these before I made sure to cut both recipes in half before starting to work.

Crispy Quinoa Peanut Butter Cookies - Gluten Free

1/4 cup honey
2 tsp + 1/2 tsp brown sugar
1/4 stick butter
1/4 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup brown rice flour
6 Tb Quinoa Flakes
1/4 tsp Vanilla
1/8 tsp baking soda
pinch salt
Optional: 1/4 cup nuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Mix the honey, sugar, butter, peanut butter and vanilla in a medium bowl until creamy. Combine the dry ingredients in another bowl. Add the dry ingredients to the mixing bowl and beat until well blended. Drop by rounded teaspoons on the parchment paper. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes. Cool.

As a group the taste testers said these were too sweet. The taste of the honey over powered the other flavors and lingered in your mouth. I agreed with my family on this one. This recipe has potential, but it needs adjusting for sweetness. Also, I think almond butter might lend a better flavor than the peanut butter.

Banana Quinoa Muffins

1/4 cup Quinoa Flour
1/4 cup Quinoa Flakes
1 Tb Honey
1 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 banana
1 egg
1 tsp brown sugar (not called for in original recipe)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a muffin tin with paper cups. Blend all the dry ingredients together. In another bowl blend the banana, egg and honey. Then slowly add the dry ingredients to the banana mixture. Pour the mixture into the muffin cups. This 1/2 recipe will make 4 muffins. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes or until browned.

My kids didn't care for the muffins. They said they were a bit rubbery. I agreed they were rather unpleasantly rubbery. Although I thought the flavor of the muffin was pretty good. The rubbery texture could have been caused by my putting some water in the unused muffin cups. It was interesting to see how the quinoa was almost steamed by the little bit of water in the cups.

I had one for breakfast the next day and toasted it. It came out beautifully and wasn't rubbery at all. I put a little butter on it and shared it with my Sheltie. She thought it was scrumptious.


Mike Eberhart said...

I love Quinoa! I especially like the grain cooked up in vegetable broth, along with roasted garlic, GF tamari, onions, peppers, etc. I also like the flour in various cookies and breads we make. Glad to see it is getting the press it deserves as a wonderful grain in our diets.

AndeanNatural said...

Thank you for sharing your recipes and results with us. I will note them on my website, where I try to collect as many quinoa-related recipes as possible. You will see that there are some recipes for children there as well. Maybe you will have better luck with those?



Sheltie Girl said...

Mike - I enjoy the flavor of quinoa too and in the same type of recipe. I haven't done as much with quinoa in bread, which I need to rectify. It's nutritional profile is too good not to use in more recipes.

Sheltie Girl said...

Sergio - Thank you for stopping by to visit. I stopped by Andean Naturals to view your collection of recipes and I like the look of the Sweet Potato Black Bean Burger (from fatfreevegan) and the Spicy Quinoa Burger (from Recipezaar). I will look for the Andean Naturals products the next time I'm at Whole Foods market so I can try them.