Cooked incorrectly, quinoa can quite easily taste bitter or mushy. Here's the method I use to do justice to this deliciously nutty grain.
Quinoa has a bitter coating called saponin that needs to be rinsed off before cooking otherwise that taste will carry over to the cooked product. There are two ways to do this:
- Soak uncooked quinoa seeds in a large bowl of water for 6-10 hours prior to cooking. Rinse thoroughly and drain.
- Rinse the uncooked seeds in cold water before cooking. Use the pot you will be cooking the seeds in, fill with cold water and use your hands to agitate the water and “wash" the seeds. Drain water and repeat. Do this 4-5 times until the quinoa water is clear.
1 cup quinoa seeds
2 cups water or stock (even better!)
Place quinoa and water/stock in a saucepan over a medium/high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce temperature to a gentle simmer and place a lid on the pot (leaving a small gap).
After 15 minutes the quinoa should be cooked and the liquid fully absorbed. Turn off the heat, place the lid on completely and let stand for 5 minutes.
Lift the lid and use a fork to fluff the quinoa.