Quinoa Crunch Cereal and a Healthy Cookbook Giveaway

Quinoa Crunch Cereal | www.kiwiandbean.com

Mornings in my house often start with: “Mama, yogut and ganowa!” That’s the sound of my R-challenged two year old calling out for his breakfast.

He’s looking for yogurt and granola. And not the kind of granola you buy in a box or from a bulk bin, or even in a fancied-up super expensive bag from the farmers’ market. No siree, my kid is looking for mama’s homespun made-from-scratch cereal.

Quinoa Crunch Cereal | www.kiwiandbean.com

And who can blame him, really? As cereal goes, nothing from a box comes even close to the taste and texture of home-toasted grains, nuts, seeds and dried fruit.

My standard DIY cereal recipe is oat-based—variations on this recipe, using whatever odds and sods I’ve got hanging out in my pantry—but I am always looking for new recipes to keep breakfast interesting. So I was happy to find this Quinoa Crunch Cereal in the pages of Nourish, the latest cookbook to hit my mailbox.

Quinoa Crunch Cereal | www.kiwiandbean.com

Nourish is written by a dietician (Cara Rosenbloom) and chef (Nettie Cronish) and filled with recipes that boost familiar foods like salads, dips, stews and stir-fries with the nutritional power of nuts, seeds, beans and legumes. The book features “whole-food, nutrient dense meals,” but without the pretense or impossible-to-source ingredients that you often find in the “clean eating” cookbook genre. These are accessible, everyday, family-friendly recipes.

Quinoa Crunch Cereal | www.kiwiandbean.com

This Quinoa Crunch Cereal calls for just five basic ingredients—quinoa, sliced almonds, sesame seeds, maple syrup and oil—and it’s simple and flexible enough to be tweaked to your family’s tastes. I added some cinnamon and sea salt to my batch, and subbed in sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds for the almonds so that my daughter could take it to school as a yogurt-topper.

This isn’t as substantial or toothsome as a boxed cereal or even homemade granola; it has a looser almost bird-seed-like consistency. So while it might just disappear in a bowl of milk, it adds a sweet and healthful crunch to homemade bircher muesli (as pictured here) or a bowl of plain yogurt, and would be great on top of one of those fancy green smoothie bowls.

Quinoa Crunch Cereal | www.kiwiandbean.com

I’ve partnered with several friends and food bloggers to share some Nourish recipes, and offer you a chance to win your very own copy of the book. To enter the giveaway, you must leave a comment below (tell us why you’d love to win a book filled with wholesome, simple recipes!) and fill in your information so that we can contact you if you are the winner. You can earn additional entries by following the participating bloggers on their Instagram or Twitter accounts. All the fine print and entry details follow the recipe. For more on Nourish, visit:

Kelly from Kelly Neil Photography, Tiffany from Eating Niagara, Regina from Leelalicious, Redawna from Nutmeg Disrupted, Gwen from Devour and Conquer, Hilary from Cocoa Bean, the Vegetable, Erin from How to Eat, Jo-Anna from A Pretty Life in the Suburbs, Stephanie from Kitchen Frolic, Caroline from Do it All Working Mom, Libby from Libby Roach, Katrina from Kitchen Trials, Laureen from Art and the Kitchen, Emily from Best of this Life, Lauren from Lauren Follet Nutrition, Zannat from Food for Happiness, Charmian from The Messy Baker and Heather from The Tasty Gardener.

Note that Whitecap Books, the publishers of Nourish, provided me with a complimentary copy of the book for review purposes.

Quinoa Crunch Cereal
 
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I have reproduced this recipe exactly as it appears in Nourish. However, when I made it myself, I did a few things differently. First, I swapped the sliced almonds for a mixture of pumpkin and sunflower seeds. Second, I added a pinch of sea salt and a half teaspoon of ground cinnamon just to give the cereal a little flavour kick. Third, I used extra virgin olive oil in place of the canola oil. (I tend not to stock canola oil in my kitchen.) And finally, while the recipe calls for a baking time of 10-12 minutes, I baked my batch for at least 25 minutes and possibly closer to 30. I generally like my granola on the brown-er side of the spectrum -- browning brings out the nutty flavour of the grains and seeds, and also makes the cereal look a bit prettier.
Serves: Makes 4 cups
Ingredients
  • 2 cups (500 mL) quinoa, rinsed [Note: I let the quinoa dry on a paper towel after rinsing it.]
  • 1 cup (250 mL) sliced raw almonds
  • ¼ cup (60 mL) raw sesame seeds
  • 2 Tbsp (30 mL) pure maple syrup
  • 2 Tbsp (30 mL) organic canola oil
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, mix together quinoa, almonds, sesame seeds, maple syrup and oil. Spread on prepared baking sheet.
  3. Bake until toasty and fragrant, 10-12 minutes.
  4. Transfer to a bowl and let cool completely.
  5. Store cereal in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 month. Serve atop yogurt or with milk.

Giveaway Details:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
This giveaway is open to all legal residents of Canada who have reached the age of majority at the time of the contest in the province or territory in which they reside. No purchase necessary. Giveaway will run from Wednesday May 4, 2016 at 12:01 a.m. to Wednesday May 11, 2016 at 11:59 p.m. Winner will be chosen at random via Rafflecopter. Winner will be contacted via email and given 48 hours to respond. If the selected winner does not respond within that time period, a new winner will be chosen. Winner selected MUST correctly answer a skill-testing mathematical question. Winner’s name will be displayed on Rafflecopter. None of the collected email addresses will ever be given out to any third party. Approximate retail value of prize is CDN $30.

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(To-Die-For) Greek Yogurt Kale Caesar Salad

Greek Yogurt Kale Caesar Salad | www.kiwiandbean.com

Food bloggers everywhere are guilty of exaggerating and overstating the quality of their recipes. Scan Pinterest and you will find more than one “best-ever,” “life-changing” or “to-die-for” concoction.

And while I’ve generally avoided such aggrandizement of my own food, I’m going to make an exception for this salad.

I hope this means you will trust me on this one. I don’t throw around terms like “to-die-for” too often. Particularly not when it comes to food. And never when that food involves leafy greens.

But this salad has truly revolutionized salad-eating for me. And for Kiwi too. We eat this salad like it’s our last meal: in silence, savouring each bite, and then literally licking the plate clean until not a trace of dressing remains. It is THAT good.

Greek Yogurt Kale Caesar Salad | www.kiwiandbean.com

I never expected it to be THAT good, I will be honest. I set out to make a mayo-free caesar salad dressing (for my egg-allergic son); I forgot to buy romaine lettuce; and I unintentionally went a little heavy-handed with the anchovies. And from these circumstances, this salad was born. A happy, mouth-watering accident.

Since this is blog about feeding a family, I should be frank and say that my kids will NOT touch this. I did convince the Bean, a caesar-salad lover, to take a bite at least. She promptly spat it back it me, rinsed her mouth with milk, and declared it “disgusting,” her new favourite word. It’s the raw kale, I think—too grassy for a youngster’s palate. You can substitute romaine for the kale to make a more kid-appealing (if more conventional) version of this salad. Or you can do like I do and just save it all for the adults.

Greek Yogurt Kale Caesar Salad | www.kiwiandbean.com

A couple of warnings before you dive right into the recipe. First: stock up on winter-fresh something (mints? gum?), particularly if you intend to serve this to guests. And avoid eating it before a business meeting, a first date or a French kiss, unless your colleagues or partner eat it too. Because while this salad is uber-delicious on the way in, it’s not quite as wonderful on the way out. You get my drift. Finally: leave out the anchovies at your peril. Those little buggers are not for everyone—I get it. But this salad is not deserving of it’s “to-die-for” moniker without them.

Greek Yogurt Kale Caesar Salad | www.kiwiandbean.com

The croutons are completely optional and/or they can be replaced with store-bought ones to make things a bit easier on you. But the zaatar croutons I’ve pictured here do take the salad to the very next level. Try them at least once, if you can. Zaatar is a mild Middle Eastern spice and seed mix that you can purchase at most well-stocked grocery stores.

Greek Yogurt Kale Caesar Salad | www.kiwiandbean.com

5.0 from 1 reviews
(To-Die-For) Greek Yogurt Kale Caesar Salad
 
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I really do think this salad is worth dying for. Make it.
Author:
Serves: 6
Ingredients
For the salad and dressing:
  • 3 small or 2 large garlic cloves
  • 3 anchovy filets (I buy the ones packed in little jars of oil)
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
  • ¼ cup full-fat (2% or higher) Greek yogurt
  • ¼ cup plus 1½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • ½ cup finely grated Parmesan cheese (plus additional for sprinkling on top, if you like that)
  • 1 large bunch of kale (Tuscan or green), destemmed and finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper
For the zaatar croutons
  • 1 whole wheat flatbread or pita (the ones without the pocket, preferably)
  • 1½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1½ teaspoons zaatar
  • Salt
Instructions
For the croutons:
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Cut the pita into approximately ¾ inch pieces. Toss them with 1½ tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and the zaatar.
  3. Dump them onto the lined baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes or until the bread is crispy and golden brown. Sprinkle with salt and set aside.
For the salad:
  1. Combine all the dressing ingredients (reserving 1½ tablespoons of olive oil) in a food processor or small powerful blender. (I use my personal-sized Vitamix, which is PERFECT for making salad dressings!)
  2. Blend until the dressing is very creamy. Transfer to a small container.
  3. Put the chopped kale in a large salad bowl. Add the reserved olive oil and ½ teaspoon sea salt. Then massage the heck out of the kale (squeezing it between your fingers) until it softens considerably. This will take a few minutes. It's an awesome way to get out your frustrations.
  4. Dress the kale, adding the dressing a tablespoon at a time until it's evenly covered and dressed to your liking. I recommend erring on the side of more dressing, rather than less. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle over the extra Parmesan cheese and croutons just before you are ready to serve the salad.

 

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Penne with Sausage, Caramelized Mushrooms and Winter Greens

Penne with Sausage, Caramelized Mushrooms and Winter Greens | www.kiwiandbean.com

I hope you will forgive my lengthy radio silence. I have been mired in renovation “problems”. Ask any contractor who steps through my door and he (invariably he) will tell you “um, there is a problem”. If I had a dime for every time I heard “Sarah, we have a problem,” I’d have paid for my renovation and then some.

There were the floors (wrong colour), the glass (first time broken, second time too big), the carpet (too big to fit through the door), the wallpaper (damaged in shipping), the vent hood (too long!) and the countertops (too short). Oh, and a chronic problem with the LED dimmers. God help me. Continue Reading →

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Those Resolution Things

Those Resolution Things | www.kiwiandbean.com

I am writing this post from a small seaside town on the southwest coast of Mexico, where we have been spending the holidays with my family. Our days have been filled with sunning and swimming, beach-strolling, surfing (Kiwi), and market-going and cooking (me).

Those Resolution Things | www.kiwiandbean.com

I’m happy to say that after two weeks here I have finally mastered guacamole: 4 avocados, juice of 2 limes, handful of chopped cilantro, half a red onion (finely chopped) and a couple generous pinches of sea salt. Mash with a fork until chunky-smooth. For years I’ve been messing around with garlic and cumin, pomegranates and olive oil, and various other things that have no place in a guac. So landing on this bright and simple version was a (dare I say, life-changing?) revelation. Continue Reading →

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