Tuesday 13 September 2011

Peruvian quinoa stew with salsa

I have recently joined Hackney Library, which has a surprisingly wide and varied selection of cookbooks. As I am embarking on the massive project of writing a cookbook myself, I'm really interested in reading other peoples' work, seeing all the many different ways you can approach this subject, learning what I like and what I don't. Although I have read three cookbooks in the past fortnight, cover to cover, there is only one which has actually inspired me to cook something - The Food and Cooking of Peru, by Flor Arcaya de Deliot
Perhaps it's the fact that Peruvian cooking is completely new to me. They approach ingredients in a completely different way to what I'm used to, which fascinates me. I mean, have you ever thought using quinoa as a base for a stew? I know that this is something that would never have even occurred to me had I not read about it here, but I'm really, really glad that I did. The recipe down there serves four


250g quinoa
1 litre water
250ml goat's milk
60ml olive oil
2 eggs, beaten
250g feta cheese
chilli powder
salt and pepper
spring onions
lime juice

Combine the tomatoes, chilli, spring onion (all chopped) with the lime juice and some salt, to make salsa. Rinse the quinoa, then cover it with boiling water and allow to simmer, until the water has been absorbed. Slowly add the milk, stirring gently, then the oil and then the eggs. Finally, add half a teaspoon of chilli powder and sliced feta cheese. Cook for another 2 minutes stirring all the time, then serve with the tomato salsa. I substituted the normal milk for goat's milk, as (yawn) I seem to have developed a lactose intolerance after a bout of gastric flu. I won't bore you with the details, but, apparently it happens like that sometimes. Luckily, I can still eat cheese. I don't know what I'd do without cheese

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