Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Last Night's Dinner: Quinoa with Corn

Would you be annoyed by someone who urged you to make a quinoa pilaf containing pancetta from Bridgehampton, corn from Riverhead, and home-grown herbs? Oh, and I forgot to mention the sprinkling of Sherry vinegar from Cavaniola's. That's why I threw in some cherry tomatoes from Florida (via the IGA, where I also bought my Bob's Red Mill quinoa). Keeping it real, here is the recipe:

Quinoa Pilaf with Corn
Serves 2

Quinoa is a complete protein, so I was happy to have this wholesome and wonderfully textured pilaf as a main course. But it would also make a good side dish for some simply grilled chicken or fish. In that case, it would serve four.

3 ounces pancetta, chopped
1 shallot, finely chopped
2 ears fresh corn, removed from cobs
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 teaspoon hot paprika (or you could substitute sweet or smoked, your choice)
14 tablespoons (a scant cup) low-sodium canned chicken broth
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint
1 teaspoon Sherry vinegar

1. Cook the pancetta in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until just crisp. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. Discard all but 1 tablespoon of the fat from the pan.
2. Add the shallot, corn, and 1/2 teaspoons salt to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and cook another 2 minutes. Stir in the quinoia and paprika and cook, stirring, another minute.
3. Add the broth to the pan and bring to a boil. Cover, turn the heat to low, and cook until the quinoa is tender, about 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and let stand, covered, another 10 minutes.
4. Transfer the quinoa to a bowl, stir in the pancetta, mint, and vinegar, season with salt and pepper, and serve.

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