Saturday, January 29, 2011

Peach & Blueberry Breakfast Quinoa

Peach & Blueberry Breakfast Quinoa 1

Are you sick of me and quinoa yet?  Well, I just couldn't close the chapter on this wonderful ingredient without sharing one more dish with you.  I've got to tell you that trying this one was stepping way out of my comfort zone, but that's what Make it with ..... Mondays is all about and I'm so thrilled that so many of you have really taken the challenge over the last couple of weeks and done just that.

I came across this recipe for Warm & Nutty Cinnamon Quinoa on Heidi Swanson's wonderful blog, 101 Cookbooks.  It looked so beautiful and tempting that I really wanted to try it for Make it with ..... Mondays challenge quinoa, but I have to admit that I was more than a little nervous about it.  You see the original recipe calls for cooking the quinoa in milk and water.  Well I hate milk, and two things that really make me gag are rice pudding (or any kind of vaguely "sweet" rice dish) and porridge.  Actually I can't even be in the same room as porridge - just the smell of it nearly makes me barf!  I'm sorry, but it's true - it's completely uncontrollable - put a bowl of porridge in front of me at your own peril.

So I was somewhat scared that this dish might turn out to be vaguely reminiscent of either of these dreaded dishes, but it looked so good in Heidi's photos I decided to "man-up" and give it a try.  I used almond milk instead of regular milk, and that added a lovely sweet nuttiness.  I thought about using coconut milk, and that would certainly be an option, if you prefer.  Like Heidi, I chose a red quinoa for this, but regular would be fine.  I also happened to have some beautiful, perfectly ripe peaches and blueberries on hand, so I used those instead of berries.  The other minor change I made was drizzling at the end with honey, instead of agave nectar.  I'm guessing that rice syrup or maple syrup would also work well.

The result was wonderful - not at all like any kind of porridge or rice pudding - the quinoa has a lovely nutty flavour (enhanced by the almond milk) and retains some chewiness.  The little bit of sweetness that comes through from the almond milk and honey, as well as the cinnamon, is a nice complement to the tangy, fresh fruit.  This was flavourful, filling and nourishing, without giving that feeling of heaviness that you can sometimes get after eating other cereals.  The second day, I ate this with a combination of blueberries, apricots and plums, which was also delicious.  I think pretty much any fruit would work in this, and even stewed, dried fruit in winter would be fine. Maybe banana and shaved coconut would also be good, especially if you used coconut milk as part of the cooking liquid.  You could also experiment with different nuts here - walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, pistachios, macadamias would all be good alternatives.

Peach & Blueberry Breakfast Quinoa 1

Peach & Blueberry Breakfast Quinoa Recipe
Adapted from 101 Cookbooks
Makes 2 generous servings
Click here for a printable copy of this recipe
Gluten-free, vegan option

1/2 cup almond milk
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup red quinoa
(rinse thoroughly in lots of running water)
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup fresh blueberries
2 fresh peaches, cubed
1/4 chopped pecans, toasted
2 teaspoons honey
(use agave nectar, maple syrup or rice syrup for vegan option)

Put quinoa, almond milk and water into a medium saucepan, set over high heat and bring to the boil.  Turn heat down to medium-low, cover and simmer until liquid is almost completely absorbed (about 15 minutes).  (Note:  I suggest you don't walk away - the milk bubbles up a lot, and makes a horrible mess if it boils over.  I found I had to leave the lid of my pan slightly ajar, and lift it off at regular intervals.  Maybe I should have used a slightly bigger pan.)

Remove pan from the heat, and allow it to stand, covered, for 5 minutes.  Stir in the cinnamon and then the fresh fruit.  Transfer to serving bowls, top with the toasted pecans, and drizzle with honey.

Delicious while still warm, but also just as good cold the next day.  If desired, you could reheat briefly in the microwave the next day, and you may also want to add a little extra milk to loosen.

Peach & Blueberry Breakfast Quinoa 2

This post is a contribution to Make it with ... Mondays challenge quinoa - the linky is still open until Monday 31 January, so keep your quinoa posts coming, and don't forget to check out this week's special ingredient which is paprika.

Make it with ..... Mondays

Secret Recipe Club


  1. Porridge smell makes you barf?! Why the porridge hate? ^o^

  2. Looks good! I have not tried quinoa before, and I can't seem to find any. Looks like I have to miss out on this week's ingredient! Will be away the whole week next. See you at 'paprika'!

  3. Wonderful and healthy warm breakfast. I have some quinoa in the pantry. I should give it a try!

  4. Sue, I've never tried quinoa before. It's quite expensive here and you have to buy more than I'd probably use but if I can ever find a smaller (cheaper) bag I'd like to try it. Your porridge hate makes me laugh, I'm glad we're still friends after I posted that Papa Bear Oatmela, lol! Have a great weekend!!

  5. You are a stylish blogger, stop by and see! Enjoy your day.

  6. This is a very unique recipe. I think I would love the nutty flavor of quinoa too. It looks delicious!

  7. Sue - what a treat! Here in the US it's winter and your fruit is making me drool. We can get imported fruits - but I'm all for in season local. As mentioned on my site, I'll have to give this a go with bulghur (the local market didn't have quinoa) - I bet it would be just as nutty.

  8. I have never tried quinoa for breakfast...although I have been seeing it alot around the blogosphere lately. I'm going to have to give that a try. I found your blog through Mom's Sunday Cafe and I'm now your newest subscriber. Congratulations on your award! Candace

  9. Now..that is something I can eat for breakfast everyday without having to think twice :)
    Bookmarking to try :)

    US Masala

  10. this is very cool! I feel like it could be a light, healthy dessert as well :)

  11. I love trying new quinoa dishes - this one is right up my alley, since I do 1 new b-fast dish/week!

  12. i never knew the red one existed, oh how beautiful it is i feel so summery those berries fruit and end with honey can't disagree with you, wish to dig into in right away :)

  13. I have some quinoa in my pantry and this looks like a good way to try it. Yes, this is one ingredient I haven't tried yet. Thanks for the recipes.


  14. I haven't tried quinoa as a sweet dish before but this does look really great. My Mom uses it a lot so I'll pass it on to her as well :) Thank you for sharing it!

    I'm also taking part in the Hearth & Soul hop and that's how I found your blog.

  15. I most certainly am not tired of your quinoa recipes. I bought a 25 lb. bag of it a few months ago, so I'm always happy for new ideas. I've certainly eaten quinoa for breaky before, but always savory, so this looks very interesting. Thanks for linking with the Hearth and Soul hop.

  16. This looks so good. I've been looking for a good breakfast quinoa recipe. This looks like it will do the trick! Thanks.



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