FFWD – Lemon Quinoa Pilaf

Lemon Quinoa Pilaf

The keen-eyed among you will notice that the title of this week’s post doesn’t really match the name of this week’s recipe. I decided to substitute quinoa so that my partner could eat it with me. I love barley, especially when my mother uses it in soup, but it contains gluten, so it’s a no go grain in our house.

Adapting the recipe was easy, though a little fussy. Quinoa is more like couscous than barley and takes only five minutes under boiling water to be ready. The original recipe allows the vegetables to cook in stages with the barley. To make sure that the carrot and red pepper were soft enough for the pilaf, I added them to the pan with the partially sautéed onions and cooked them until they were nearly tender. Then, I added the vegetables to the chicken stock and simmered it for a few more minutes. I strained the vegetables out of the stock and set them aside, then brought the stock up to a boil before pouring it over the quinoa. (If your stock reduces too much, you can top it up with boiling water.)

Once the quinoa was done, I added the cooked vegetables to it, along with the lemon zest and green onions. Not exactly what Dorie had in mind, but with all the flavours and textures intact.

A bowl of quinoa pilaf, dressed with green onion and lemon zest.

You can find many other blogged descriptions of this week’s FFWD recipe (many of them ACTUALLY using barley!) here: Lemon Barley Pilaf


11 thoughts on “FFWD – Lemon Quinoa Pilaf

  1. Teresa, quinoa sounds like a really delicious substitute for barley. A lot of cooks and bakers are raving about it and I love the way the texture of your cooked quinoa looks like – I am sure that it tasted wonderful. And, yes, that bowl is very pretty, I agree.

    Have a good weekend!

  2. Looks delicious. I love quinoa. This dish is so versatile that I think it would be great with many additions and substitutions. I was thinking about using bulgur next time, simply because it takes less time to cook than barley.

  3. I really like that you did this with quinoa as if I do this again I will do it the same. I prefer eating it to grains these days. Not because I don’t do the gluten thing…i do… but I just love quinoa and want to be using more of it. Thanks for this!

  4. Very pretty presentation and a great substitute. We were not overwhelmed with the recipe,
    not enough flavor, but I added the leftovers to broth, added some hot sauce, and enjoyed it.

  5. looks good to me, I prefer quinoa to barley, just think it’s lighter for Summertime eating, love all the veggies and your flavors;-)

  6. This may not be what Dorie had in mind, Teresa, but I thank you for posting such a good and informative essay about cooking this recipe with Quinoa. I just purchased my first and a rather large package of it from Trader Joe’s. So large, in fact, that if Armageddon comes, I’m set with enough Quinoa to survive. And, now, I know what to do with it! Your bowl looks delicious and it’s nice that you go the extra mile to accomodate your partner.

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