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Le Cordon Bleu News, 03/01/2011
Quinoa "paella"
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An excellent substitution for rice

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About this recipe

Quinoa is an excellent substitution for rice in this Peruvian version of “paella” as it is light, tasty and the grains do not stick together. The quinoa lends a pleasant crunch, contrasting to the rich meatiness of the calamari. The addition of chili, paprika and orange contrasts perfectly with the delicate, slightly nutty flavor of quinoa.

Recipe - Quinoa

Serves: 2

In this recipe:

  • calamari
  • quinoa
  • tomatoes
  • chili
  • paprika





4 calamari*
3 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves
2 tomatoes
180 g quinoa
1 chili
1/4 tsp paprika
1 pinch saffron
peel of ½ orange
750 ml - 1 liter chicken or vegetable stock, or water
1-2 scallions (spring onions)
Note: * Calamari can be replaced by other seafood, chicken or pork. It is also possible to make a vegetarian version using seasonal vegetables.

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  1. Clean the calamari, cut the hoods (body only) into rings, set aside the tentacles.
  2. Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil and sauté the rings and tentacles; set aside.
  3. Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil and sweat the garlic without coloring. Add the tomato, sweat for a further minute; set aside.
  4. Heat the remaining olive oil and sauté the quinoa (that has been well rinsed under cold running water), stirring constantly. Add the garlic/tomato mixture along with the spices and orange peel. Cover with the stock (or water) and simmer without covering. Add further stock, stirring continuously until the quinoa is cooked. Add the calamari rings and the finely chopped green part of the scallion (spring onion) and cook for a further minute. Leave to rest for a few minutes before serving.
  5. Presentation: serve the quinoa "paella" with the reserved tentacles and sections of green scallion (spring onion) positioned in the middle as decoration.

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