From time to time, we have foreign guests for dinner. Houston is a city that receives many people from other countries for periods of 2-4 years; many come to work while others come to study and some stay as we did. This time, the guests were two German men and two Chinese women. On these occasions, I always try to do something Chilean, but on the safe side… I’ve learned that the “Pastel de Choclo” (corn pie) is a bit too exotic.
Also, one of the guests was gluten intolerant, so the quinoa came to the rescue. I cooked this quinoa stew or Quinotto, served with grilled chicken. It was an effortless dinner. For dessert, I baked an almond cake with Chilean papayas, also know as Caricas. Soon, I will share that recipe. And drinking pisco Sour puts everyone in a pleased mood.
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Quinoa Stew or Quinotto
- 2 cups quinoa
- 4 cups vegetable broth, low sodium preferred
- 1 large bundle of chard
- 1 onion
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons butter
- oil, salt
- Wash the quinoa until it stops foaming. Place in a medium saucepan and cover with 3 cups vegetable broth. Cook over medium-high heat until it boils. Lower the heat to low, simmer for 20 minutes. Once ready, let it cool down on a tray.
- Wash and chop the chard stalks into small cubes. Cut the leaves into strips.
- In a large saucepan, cover the bottom with water. Place over medium heat, when boiling add the chard, leaves only, and cover. Cook 5 minutes over low heat. Uncover and remove the chard to a plate.
- Chop the onion into small cubes.
- Clean the saucepan and heat one tablespoon oil and 1 of butter. Brown the onions and chard stalks for 10 minutes until golden. Add the cream, vegetable broth, and grated Parmesan cheese. Stir in the quinoa and finally the cooked chard.
- If necessary, add more vegetable broth to desired consistency, like a thick soup. Finally, add the butter, mix well and adjust the seasoning.
- Serve hot.