Well. A food blog this definitely is not. I mean, don’t get me wrong: I’m a foodie with a capital F. But my cooking style is much more “throw ingredients together and hope for the best” than “follow that recipe to the letter”. The risk with this method (if you can even call it that) is the occasional culinary flop that occurs in my kitchen from time to time.
But every so often, I put together a little something that turns out to be so undeniably tasty, I feel compelled to spread the word. And this little roasted tomato quinoa concoction is one of them. It’s stupidly simple, yet it has enough personality to jazz up even the most basic of proteins (ideal when you’re staring down the barrel of yet another grilled-chicken-breast dinner), and has the added advantage of being ridiculously good for you. Oh, and if you’re suffering from a late-summer tomato overload? Make a double-batch…all of that tomato-y, basil-y, garlicky goodness is so much better the next day.
Roasted Tomato Quinoa
- 1 c. quinoa
- 2 c. water
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes (the sweeter, the better)
- 1 t. minced garlic
- Olive or grapeseed oil
- 10-15 basil leaves
- 1/2 lime or 1/4 lemon
Cook the quinoa (which you do by copiously rinsing off the quinoa, adding it to a saucepan with 2 cups of water and a generous spritz of salt, then simmering, uncovered, until the water evaporates, which will be about 10-15 minutes). While that’s happening, turn your oven to broil. As it heats up, put your cherry tomatoes on a baking sheet, add a good glug of oil, the garlic, and a hearty dose of salt and pepper. Toss. Then, bury about half of those basil leaves under the tomatoes (you want them to cook, but not burn).
Broil the tomatoes for about 10 minutes, depending on the heat of your broiler. You’ll know they’re ready when they split open, give off their juice, and a few of them get a bit of a summer tan.
At this point, the quinoa should be about done. While it’s still warm, scrape the entire contents of the baking sheet into the pot with the quinoa (all that tomato juice and oil…yum!). Add another pinch or two of pepper, squeeze the citrus juice on top, and mix to combine. Snip the remaining fresh basil leaves into the pot (or if you’re feeling fancy, dish it up and then put the fresh basil on top, garnish-style).
Bonus tip: If you’re very lazy, like me, you can make this the easiest dinner on earth by adding a few fish filets to the baking sheet next to the tomatoes (just give the tomatoes a few minutes’ head start).
Now, be honest: should I tell you when I cook something else that’s worth mentioning? Or do you have plenty of food blogs in your reader, thankyouverymuch, and I should get back to discussing those grey jeans we’re all on the hunt for?