After four years of food blogging you’d think I would have learnt all the little tips and tricks that make the best bloggers, well, THE BEST! But I’m still always months behind the hottest trends and can’t quite bring myself to be cooking up Christmas treats in June, or preparing dishes to take photos at 6am to catch the “best light”. You know what though, I don’t care. I’m not a trendsetter, or a fancy food journalist. I’m just one woman on a mission cook as much as I can and, rather shamefully, eat as much as I can. Considering my day job somewhat takes over my life, I think I’m doing quite a good job…this Broccoli and Quinoa Casserole doesn’t look too bad does it?!
With that in mind is it any surprise that this is my first recipe using quinoa? I’ve eaten it hundreds of times in some rather uninspiring salads so when I first stumbled across the concept of quinoa casserole I was intrigued. Anything that combines healthy ingredients with ooey, gooey, umptious textures has me sold, so I decided to see for myself just how easy it was to make a creamy casserole with quinoa.
What struck me when I first began looking at other recipes, was just how many of the recipes was how almost ALL of them called for a cream of mushroom or cream of chicken soup as the base for the sauce. Why oh why would you use a can of soup?! Especially If you’re going to all the effort of buying quinoa, which isn’t cheap after all. Absolute craziness. One thing you can count on here is that its made with simple ingredients and perfect for anyone watching what they eat of focussing on clean eating.
For this creamy casserole all you need is , follow the simple recipe below and you’ve got yourself on hell of a tasty, healthy casserole. You could easily add in other veggies – asparagus, spinach or kale would work particularly well and if you can’t do without your meat use chicken stock and shredded chicken to bulk out the bake. Why not go all out and top with your favourite cheese too? Or maybe more than one! The possibilities are endless…
Broccoli an Quinoa Casserole
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp cornflour
- 1 cup milk
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
- 1 head of broccoli, chopped into bite size florets
- 1/2 a white onion, diced finely
- 5 mushrooms, sliced
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1/2 cup Gruyère cheese
- Salt and pepper to season
- First, preheat the oven to 400F.
- Pour boiling water over the quinoa in a bowl and let sit for 10 minutes while you make the sauce, until the quinoa has begun to sprout and looks like little spirals.
- In the meantime, melt the butter in a small pan and stir in the flour. Bring it together until a thick paste forms.
- Adding a little milk at a time, mix the milk and the paste until a smooth sauce has formed.
- Finally add the stock and simmer for 5 minutes until the sauce is beginning to thicken.
- Blanch the broccoli then add to the stock along with the sprouting quinoa, garlic, onion and mushrooms.
- Stir, taste and season before adding to an oven proof dish and baking uncovered for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, check that the casserole is bubbling and the sauce has thickened. If happy with the consistency, top with chunks of the Gruyere and cook for a final 5 minutes or until the cheese has melted and is bubbling and golden.
I’m sure by now you’re all aware by now that its pronounced “keen-wah” instead of “kwih-no-ah.” I’m not going to lie…it did take me quite a long time to realise this… And presuming you’re all familiar with this wonder seed I won’t lecture about its benefits. I’ll just stress how amazing this quinoa casserole really is.
If the pictures of my Broccoli and Quinoa Casserole aren’t tempting enough just think how good it is having a one pot dish. Right now I’m obsessed with finding easy recipes that don’t require an awful lot of washing up. We recently found ourselves without a dishwasher and my god did I realise just how much I hate standing at the sink. After all, I could be using that time more productively…probably sat on Pinterest getting pin envy.
Talking of which…if you have a pinterest account, feel free to get pinning. That’s all from me for now. Enjoy!