Risotto is prized for its creamy texture and rich taste. Quinoa is naturally creamy and makes a lighter, whole grain version of this popular Italian comfort food. Spinach adds extra nutrition and flavor.
1 10-ounce package pre-washed spinach
1 tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon red chili flakes
1 cup quinoa, rinsed under cold water
1 cup dry white wine
4 cups low-sodium, fat free chicken broth or vegetable broth*
1 4-ounce package fresh goat cheese, room temperature
4 tablespoons grated Romano or Parmesan cheese
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
Microwave the spinach in its bag on high about 30 seconds or until it wilts. Set aside. Warm the oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the oil, garlic, and red chili flakes. Cook 2 to 3 minutes until the garlic becomes fragrant but does not brown. If the garlic begins to brown, reduce the heat to low. Add the quinoa and cook another minute, stirring once or twice until the garlic in mixed in. Add the wine and bring to a boil. Cook another minute until most of the liquid is evaporated. Add the broth, and bring to a slow simmer. Cook 10 to 12 minutes until more than half of the liquid is absorbed.
Roughly chop the spinach. Stir it in along with the goat cheese, lemon zest, lemon juice, the nutmeg, and salt. Sprinkle with grated cheese and serve immediately.
*Not all broth brands are gluten free, and have have long ingredient lists where gluten can be hiding. So double check the label or use my delicious simple chicken broth.
Nutritional Stats Per Serving (2 cups)
418 calories. 20 g protein, 43 g carbohydrates, 14 g fat (6 g saturated), 17 mg cholesterol, 8 g fiber, 468 mg sodium.