Quinoa with Chicken & Roasted Vegetable Medley by Foodie Home Chef

I have been honoured to have a great cook and foodie share some of her recipes with my followers. Simone of Foodie Home Chef  has been generous enough to allow me to post another of her great creations. I really suggest you check her blog  out. There are so many tasty tidbits and her photography is beautiful!

Here is the URL: http://foodiehomechef.com

I am really impressed with this recipe. It has such a great use of varied colours and textures. Plus, anyone who roasts vegetables knows about building flavour. I know you will like her post!

Quinoa with Chicken & Roasted Vegetable Medley

When I discovered quinoa in 2009 I became hooked on this healthy, ancient grain. Shortly after that I created this recipe which became one of my favorite meals & Signature Recipes!

Serves: 3

Ingredients
Extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
6 to 9 Brussels sprouts (depending on size), remove any browning outer leaves, trim bottoms & slice in half lengthwise (see Tip# 1)
Organic cauliflower florets, cut larger ones in half, 3rds or 4ths so the pieces are somewhat evenly sized & you end up with 1 1/2 cups
2 to 3 organic carrots (depending on size), peeled & diagonally sliced 1/3″ thick at fat end, then 1/2″ to 1″ as you get to the thinner parts
Kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper
250 ml (1 cup) quinoa (uncooked, any color)
1 – 458 ml (15.5 oz) can organic pinto beans, drained, rinsed under cool water & set aside
250 ml (1 cup) cooked chicken meat, hand tear off the bone & set aside (see Tips# 2 & 3)
2 scallions, sliced (about 75 ml (1/3 cup))
5 ml (1 tsp) minced fresh garlic (ok to use store bought minced garlic in a jar)
15 ml (1 Tblsp) finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves
15 ml (1 Tblsp) chopped fresh mint leaves, packed
15 ml (1 Tblsp) balsamic vinegar
For garnishing: 50 ml (1/4 cup) coarsely chopped almonds, divided (see Tip# 4)
Optional for garnishing each serving: crumbled up goat cheese and/or chia seeds

Directions
1. Move an oven rack to the lower middle position & preheat oven to 400°. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil & lightly grease with EVOO.

2. Put Brussels sprouts, cauliflower & carrots in a 2.5 litre (2.5 quart) bowl. Add 15 ml (1 Tblsp) EVOO & toss till well coated. Spread out on baking sheet, then sprinkle evenly with salt & pepper.

3. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, turning them over 1/2 way through, till they’re caramelized & are cooked fork tender. Remove from oven & let cool.

4. While waiting for the veggies; cook the quinoa according to pkg directions (or see Quinoa recipe http://foodiehomechef.com/recipe/quinoa/). Set aside till ready to serve.

5. For the medley; put pinto beans in a 4 litre (4 quart) bowl, sprinkle liberally with salt & a little pepper. Stir gently. Add roasted vegetables, chicken, scallions, garlic, rosemary, mint, 25 ml (2 Tblsp) EVOO & 15 ml (1 Tblsp) balsamic.

6. Toss gently till well combined.

7. Create 250 ml (1 cup) beds of cooked quinoa on each serving plate & make a well in the center. Spoon on desired amount of medley. Garnish with almonds. Add goat cheese & chia seeds, if using & serve. Best if served barely warm or at room temperature.

Tips & Suggestions
1. In place of any of the 3 vegetables, you can roast an equal amount of any vegetable you choose. Just keep in mind that they may cook at different lengths of time.

2. For the cooked chicken meat; pull the meat off a 1/4 of a rotisserie cooked grocery store chicken…this will yield the 1 cup needed. You can also use leftover chicken or turkey meat or cook up a boneless, skinless chicken breast.

3. Want to turn this into a vegetarian meal? Replace the chicken with a 4th roasted vegetable at step# 2 or just increase the amount of any of the 3 vegetables in the recipe.

4. A mortar & pestle works great to break up the almonds to a coarsely chopped consistency. You can replace the almonds with an equal amount of any nut (or combo of nuts) you choose.

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