Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Wish me luck!

Ravings: I meant to tell you about this before, but I’ve been slacking on the blog. I have a lot going on right now, but I’m making a renewed effort!

I’ve entered a recipe contest! Trader Joe’s is hosting a Quintessential Quinoa Recipe contest and I entered it! I’m not expecting to win, but it was kinda cool just to do it. Jason, of course, was only concerned with what I could win and when I told him that I win bragging rights, he lost interest. He’s funny that way. At this point, I have no doubt that he has completely erased all memory of me even telling him I entered. Gotta love him, right?

I do love quinoa and wasn’t sure what to enter, so I ended up submitting two recipes. I’m not sure they accepted both, but it didn’t specifically say you could only enter once. It says the winner will be announced in the May enewsletter, so everyone keep your fingers crossed until then.

Seriously, keep them crossed!

Cravings: Here are the two recipes I submitted. For the contest you have to use all Trader Joe’s products, which I do love, but if you don’t have an easily accessible Trader Joe’s, feel free to use what you have available.

Chocolate Cherry Quinoa Bars

1/2 cup Trader Joe's Cherry Cider
1/2 cup Trader Joe's Organic Quinoa
1 cup Trader Joe's Pitted Dates
1 Tbsp Trader Joe's Pure Bourbon Vanilla Extract
2 Tbsps Trader Joe's Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1/2 cup Trader Joe's Just Almond Meal

In a small saucepan, bring cherry cider to boil and allow to reduce to about half. Grind quinoa spice grinder until it reaches a flour-like consistency. It's ok if it's not perfect. In a food processor, combine dates, vanilla and reduced cherry cider and process until it forms a thick paste. Transfer to a mixing bowl and mix in the quinoa, cocoa powder and almond meal. Mix until thoroughly combined. You might have to get your hands dirty here. Mush the mixture into a rectangle shape on a sheet pan (I used a small stone baking pan with sides) about 1/2 inch thick. Bake at 350 for about 15 minutes. Allow to cool a bit then cut into desired size bars.

Quinoa Croquette

1 cup Trader Joe's Organic Tricolor Quinoa
1 1/2 cups water
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion from Trader Joe's
1 Tbsp Trader Joe's Traditional Olive Tapenade
1/2 cup Trader Joe's Organic Tricolor Quinoa
1 Tbsp Trader Joe's 21 Seasoning Salute
1/4 cup Trader Joe's parmesan cheese
2 Trader Joe's eggs
1 cup Trader Joe's Japanese Style Panko Breadcrumbs

Cook the 1 cup of quinoa in the water by bringing to a boil, cover, turn heat down to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat, leaving it covered for another 5 minutes. Fluff with fork.

While that's cooking saute the onions until soft and translucent. Set aside to cool.

Grind the 1/2 cup of quinoa in a spice grinder until a flour-like consistency. Then add everything except the panko to a large mixing bowl. Mix and form into small patties. Coat with the panko and pan fry in a tiny bit of oil until crispy and warmed through.

Serve with Greek Inspired Salad.

Are your fingers still crossed???

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