Black Quinoa with Turkey and Moroccan Spices
serves 4

1/2 lb ground turkey breast
1 c black quinoa
1 medium red onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup water
3 tsp peanut oil, divided
1 Tbsp honey or agave
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
1/2 to 1 oz almonds, chopped
2 pinches of saffron, divided
2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp black pepper
3/4 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp black caraway
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
powdered sugar for garnish

A note on the saffron: you want to grind the saffron threads up before you add them to anything – if you have a mortar and pestle use that, otherwise just use the back of a spoon.

Rinse the quinoa well, combine with the broth, water, and one pinch of saffron in a saucepan, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer uncovered until the water is absorbed and the quinoa is tender – about 20-30 minutes. Check it after 20 minutes and if it is not yet tender, but the water is gone, add a bit more water.

Put the other pinch of saffron in 2 tsp of peanut oil, and set aside to let the saffron dissolve. Mix all of the spices together, except the salt and sugar (grind them from fresh spices if possible).

Heat the other 1 tsp of peanut oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add the ground turkey, and cook until there is no pink left and the meat has started to brown. Break the meat up with a spatula or wooden spoon as it cooks. Set aside.

Heat the 2 tsp of olive oil with the saffron in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add the spices to the oil, and let the spices heat up for about a minute until fragrant. Add the garlic, and saute for a minute or two. Add the onions and peppers, and saute until the onion is translucent. Turn the heat down to medium low or low, sprinkle the onions and peppers with the salt and sugar, and let them continue to cook for another 20-30 minutes until they are caramelized. Scrape the bottom of the skillet every few minutes (or more frequently if needed), adding small amounts of water as necessary to prevent sticking and burning. Once the onions and peppers are caramelized, add the balsamic vinegar, and continue to cook for another minute. Add the turkey, quinoa, and honey, and mix well. Plate, and then top with a spoonful of powdered sugar passed through a sifter or fine strainer, and then the almonds.

The plated end product wasn’t being very photogenic, so here’s everything but the powdered sugar before I stored it for dinner the next night.

B'Stella-Inspired Black Quinoa and Turkey


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