Serves 2 | Prep 5 mins | Cook 15-20 mins

Side Dish / Gluten Free / Iron Packed / Digestion Helper

This is a recipe that manifested out of me suddenly realising I had forgotten an essential ingredient whilst at the shop for the original side dish I had planned! My forgetfulness and inability to stick to a list has often landed me in prime opportunities for a creative quickie in the kitchen. The crunchy quinoa and pistachios are tossed with silky earthy beetroot and fresh parsley. The natural flavours of this dish are essentially earthy & mellow, so this would be best suited with the main part of the meal having a sharp distinctive flavour. Why not try it with Lemon & Garlic Roasted Halloumi.

BLACK QUINOA – Quinoa is a fantastic source of protein, especially for those that avoid eating meats. Quinoa is classed as a complete protein, meaning that it contains all 10 essential amino acids which you can normally only find within animal product. As well as providing a good supply of dietary fibre, (1 cup of) black quinoa will also supply 20% of your daily intake of folate (a B-vitamin essential for skin, liver, eyes, and hair), and 15% of Iron (red blood cells need this to carry oxygen around in the body). (SOURCE: http://www.livestrong.com/article/497045-benefits-of-black-quinoa/ )

BEETROOT- Beetroot are high in potassium, magnesium, iron, vitamin A, B6, C, folic acid and anti-oxidants. (SOURCE http://www.webmd.boots.com/healthy-eating/guide/beetroot-benefits ) The nitrates in beetroot help lower blood pressure and may help heart disease. (SOURCE http://www.undergroundhealth.com/12-healthiest-foods-on-earth/ )

PISTACHIOS – Rich in mono-unsaturated fats like oleic acid make the pistachio nut a good source of anti-oxidants. Pistachio nuts also contain carotenes, vitamin E, polyphenolic anti-oxidant compounds which help remove free-radicals from the body. They are also rich in the essentials for boosting our immune system; copper, manganese, iron, zinc and selenium. (SOURCE: http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/pistachio.html )

Pistachios also contain potassium which will work alongside the fibre in the quinoa to aid healthy digestion.

PARSLEY – The vitamin C content is higher than oranges (53% of your recommended daily intake in 30g of fresh parsley). Within the same 30g you will get 553% of your daily intake for vitamin K (healthy bones). It’s packed full of antioxidants, vitamin A, folate, iron. and can help neutralize carcinogens. It’s also great at neutralizing garlic breath! (SOURCE: http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=100 )

Containing a high amount of enzymes, parsley benefits healthy digestive activity .

 

Ingredients.

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150g black quinoa

150g beetroot, cooked in natural juices, cubed

30g pistachios, bashed

Bunch fresh parsley, finely chopped

Olive oil

Pinch of pepper

 

Method.

 

  1. Cook the quinoa according to packet instructions in simmering water (15-20 mins).
  2. Drain the quinoa and rinse under the cold tap in a sieve.
  3. Mix together all the ingredients in a bowl along with a tablespoon of olive oil. Serve.