Our favorite ways to eat grains

Over the years, we've come to eat more fruits and vegetables and fewer grains, even though we've generally used whole grains such as brown rice. Although we seldom eat rice anymore, we've discovered quinoa.

Greek quinoa salad

Greek quinoa salad ©Janet Allen
Greek quinoa salad

We like quinoa, and it's now the main grain we use.

We prepare it in a variety of ways including adding it to stir fries, but here's one salad we like. It's basically a Greek style salad made with quinoa rather than with other grains.

This is a general recipe. We vary the amount of ingredients depending on what we have available. These are just suggestions, not rules.

  • Wash thoroughly in water to remove the saponin (soap-like) coating
    • 1-1/2 cups quinoa (we like to use the rainbow type)
  • Bring to a boil, then simmer until water is absorbed (about 15-20 minutes)
    • the 1-1/2 cups quinoa
    • about 3-1/2 cups water or bouillon (we just throw in a couple of vegan bouillon cubes)
  • Cool.
  • While quinoa is cooling, make the dressing. Combine
    • 2 Tbs. vinegar (we use wine vinegar)
    • 2 Tbs. lemon juice
    • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
    • 3 Tbs. olive oil
  • Combine cooled quinoa with
    • 1/2 - 1 cup olives
    • 1/3 cup parsley, chopped
    • 1 onion, diced
    • 1 cup or more tomatoes, chopped
  • Pour dressing over and mix together.
  • Mix in
    • 1/2 - 1 cup feta, crumbled

Maple granola

Granola  ©Janet Allen

The quantities are variable. I usually use a relatively larger amount of oats and wheat germ since we don't want it to be too sweet.

Our version makes quite a lot of granola since I've multiplied the amounts found in the original recipe I used years ago. We could make a smaller amount, but why dirty these pans, measuring spoons, etc., and watch over it while it's baking for such a small amount? We find it keeps quite well in glass jars in the refrigerator.

  • Simmer together:
    • 1 cup maple syrup
    • 2/3 cup canola oil
    • 1/4 cup water
    • 1 Tbs. almond extract
  • Combine:
    • 8 to 12 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
    • 2 cups wheat germ (we buy the toasted wheat germ)
    • 1/2 cup brown sugar
    • 1 1/3 cups sliced almonds
  • Combine the wet and dry ingredients.
    • We put this large quantity into a very large lasagna pan. Bake at 250° until it's dry and toasty - maybe about 45 minutes? We stir it about every 20 minutes.
  • Add cut-up dried fruit after it comes out of the oven.
    • We use variable quantities of dried apricots, craisins, raisins, or any other dried fruit or additions we want.