Fried Quinoa Stuffed Peppers & Coconut Lime Shrimp – Serves 4

Back to the grind.  Spent the weekend brunching, laughing, and lounging.  I try to do bulk cooking on Sundays but I was a weeeee bit too lazy so meal prep day was moved to Monday.  Now I’ve got leftovers for all my lunches – perfect.

I’ll keep this educational piece short and sweet…  These recipes are super easy and the ingredients are good for you!  Yes, good for you.  The more variety, the better.  Think color, think antioxidants.  Lastly, these stuffed peppers are perfect for vegetarians – not only are they filled with varied vegetables but quinoa is a complete protein.  Not all complete proteins need to come from meat, poultry, or seafood!  However I wanted seafood so I put together the fixings for my favorite shrimp recipe.

Fried Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

Ingredients:

  • 4 colored Bell Peppers with the insides/core removed
  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 large yellow onion, minced
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, minced
  • 1 cup green onions, minced
  • 1/4 cup peanuts, crushed
  • 1/2 cup carrots, shredded
  • 2 tbsp pineapple, crushed
  • 2 tbsp garlic, minced
  • SPICES (4-5 shakes):  Curry powder, tumeric, cumin, garlic powder, curry powder, red pepper flakes, chili powder, and ground black pepper
  • OPTIONAL:  Sea salt
  • Coconut oil – enough to coat a frying pan

Methodology:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Line a baking pan with parchment paper.
  3. Heat a frying pan with coconut oil under medium-high heat.
  4. Add to the frying pan the following ingredients: yellow onion, cilantro, green onion, peanuts, carrots, and pineapple.  Sauté well for 5 minutes.
  5. Add the quinoa, egg, spices, and salt (if used).  Sauté for an additional 10 minutes.
  6. Remove the quinoa mixture from heat and stuff the pepper shells.  Place the bottoms of the peppers directly on the parchment paper and allow the insides to face up.
  7. Cook for 15 minutes then set on a plate for serving!

Coconut Lime Shrimp

Ingredients:

  • 1# jumbo shrimp, fresh with the tails/shells removed (or frozen)
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 limes, juice (the size of a golf ball)
  • Coconut oil to coat frying pan

Methodology:

  1. In a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients and mix well.
  2. Under medium-high heat add coconut oil to a frying pan.
  3. Toss in the shrimp mixture and cook until golden brown.
  4. Set aside for serving or add to the plate with the stuffed pepper – such an amazing combination.  Makes me want to go someplace tropical.

What else was on my plate?  I did add my usual staple of greens which tends to be either kale, asparagus, or Brussels sprouts.  As seen above, I added my Garlic Peppered Asparagus but unlike the linked recipe I did not add pumpkin seeds or Brussels.

xxx – Sarah

Quinoa and Asparagus Hush Puppy Cakes – Makes a Dozen

Bread, buns, and cakes stress me out sometimes.  I try to find gluten-free options in the store that are appealing but lately none stand out.  I’m in the mood for texture/grittiness but without the wheat.  Rather than buying overpriced gluten-free options I opted to make my own…  These cakes are pretty darn good if I may say so.

I am heading out of town this weekend and wanted to use everything in my pantry/refrigerator… Successfully did just that.  The recipe calls for quinoa which is a fantastic gluten-free grain.  It is a great protein source for vegetarians and vegans since it is a complete protein – contains all of the nine essential amino acids!  Had a taste tester who said these were like a healthy but yummy version of hush puppies hence the name!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup quinoa, cooked (utilized the Organic Tricolor Quinoa from Trader Joe’s – so delish)
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/3 cup aged parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 cup asparagus, minced
  • 2 tbsp garlic, crushed or minced (when in a bind I opt for ready-to-use garlic products which are a staple in my refrigerator – I love the Roasted Minced Garlic from Spice World)
  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt or ‘to taste’ (I did about 3 full grinds of my salt – equivalent to 1/2 tsp)
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper; ground
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper; flakes

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Methodology:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked quinoa, olive oil, eggs, asparagus, garlic, and flour, stir well.
  2. Add the necessary spices (S&P) then stir well or mix with your hands.
  3. Under medium-high heat drizzle olive oil in a large saucepan then using your hands create Ping-Pong shaped balls and place on the pan.  Keep a space between each ball then flatten with a spatula.
  4. Allow to heat each side for 3-4 minutes until slightly browned then finish with a 30 second-1 minute sear on each side.
  5. Set to the site on a cool plate or wire rack.
  6. These cakes are absolutely heavenly when added to a salad, topped with meat, or topped with cooked veggies.
  7. Enjoy!

 

xxx – Sarah

To cook quinoa:  Combine 1 cup quinoa and 2 cups water bring to a boil atop stove then reduce to a simmer and cover.  I usually allow it to sit out on the stove top covered for 2-3 hours then start utilizing it by itself or in other recipes such as this one.