Friday, April 18, 2014

My New Addiction - Cheesy Quinoa

I know it's been a while now since I said I would post on my favorite new food - cheesy quinoa.  But better late than never, right? 
I didn't really think it was possible to improve on my cashew cream sauce. But then I added miso and truffle oil ...  What a difference! The miso, in particular, really adds a sharp, "cheesy" flavor to the sauce.  It just goes to show, even your staple recipes can always be revisited and maybe improved.  I don't even think I'll  ever go back to the old recipe.  And I definitely wouldn't have thought I would ever say that a month ago. 
New-and-Improved Cashew Cream (Cheese) Sauce:
(ingredient amounts are all estimated and can be adjusted to taste)
1/3 cup cashews, soaked overnight
1 1/2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1 1/2 tablespoons miso
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 teaspoon truffle oil (optional)
soy or almond milk to reach desired consistency
I blend everything together in a cuisinart and then taste to adjust flavors. 
Then the real fun begins.  The sauce can be used on just about anything - pasta, plain broccoli, or even as pizza sauce.  But my new (and healthy!) favorite way to use it is to make cheesy quinoa.  Just mix cheese sauce with cooked quinoa, then dress up with your favorite add-ins.  Several times now I've opted to mix my cheesy quinoa with cooked broccoli (I lightly sauteed mine for a few minutes).  But you could use just about any vegetable under the sun.  I've also mixed mine with black beans (white would also be tasty!) and chopped and sauteed bell pepper.  I can't wait to try cheesy quinoa with mushrooms!  The possibilities are definitely endless.  But I intend to try as many as I can ...

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