Healthy Recipes: Quinoa with chickpeas and spinach

Quinoa is an easy way to add extra protein and fibre to your diet, and this quick-cooking grain is also a good source of iron. Spinach and chickpeas add more fibre and iron still.

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Quinoa is an easy way to add extra protein and fibre to your diet, and this quick-cooking grain is also a good source of iron. Spinach and chickpeas add more fibre and iron still. 

Ingredients:
1 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained
1 cup water
¾ cup fresh squeezed orange juice (2 oranges)
½ teaspoon sea salt
zest from two organic oranges
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onions, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
½ cup organic raisins
1 cup cooked chickpeas (or organic canned)
1-2 cups spinach leaves, trimmed, washed, drained and dried
salt to taste
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ cup toasted pinenuts or almonds
1 orange cut into wedges

Directions:
1. Rinse the quinoa well and drain in a fine-mesh sieve. Combine water and orange juice (to equal 1 ¾ cups) and bring to a boil in a 1.5- or two-quart saucepan. Add salt, orange zest, and rinsed quinoa. Return to the boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes, or until all the liquid has been absorbed. Remove from heat and let sit covered to fluff up.

2. While the quinoa is cooking, heat the oil in a large skillet with a tight-fitting lid. Add the onions and sauté over medium heat for 10 minutes, until they have softened and started to brown a bit. Add garlic and sauté until golden.

3. Add raisins, chickpeas, and chopped spinach. Cover and cook over medium heat for five minutes, or just until the spinach has wilted. Adjust heat if necessary. Drain any excess water after cooking the spinach. Season to taste with salt.

4. To serve, fold the vegetables into the hot, cooked quinoa. Stir in cinnamon. Garnish with toasted pinenuts or almonds and orange wedges for a final squeeze of orange juice (for extra iron absorption!).