A couple weeks ago when I was grocery shopping, I walked past a box of grains in the health food aisle that I had never heard of before called Kañiwa. Judging by the name alone, my initial thought was that this was some sort of version of quinoa. When I read the back of the box, I realized that kañiwa is actually a seed rather than a grain although it is closely related to the quinoa family, and it is a popular superfood hailing from Peru. The front of the box advertised that this was a food with high iron content, so I grabbed it to prepare and eat a couple days before and during my period. It also contains higher levels of protein, magnesium, and calcium than quinoa and is naturally gluten free. When cooked, the kañiwa has a similar texture to quinoa and a sort of nutty flavor. Because the seeds are light but filled with dense nutrients, they fill you up but don't leave you feeling overly full and tired. I read up on a few different ways people creatively used this seed, like for porridges and breads, but since I was just trying it out for the first time, I kept it simple and added only raw foods to the cooked seed. I chose to add life to my kañiwa bowl with Mediterranean flavors, but you could add any raw fruits or vegetables you prefer. The dressing I chose to make was carrot turmeric, to add sweet and spicy notes. I used fresh turmeric but you could probably play around with dry turmeric and come out with something similar in flavor.
Healthy Dinner: Mediterranean Kañiwa & Carrot Turmeric Dressing
Recipe Type: Hearty Entrees
YIELDS 1 bowl
- 1 1/2 cup cooked Kañiwa
- 2 tablespoons tabouleh
- 2 tablespoons hummus
- 2 tablespoons pomegranate seeds
- 1/2 avocado, sliced
- 1/2 cup arugula
- 1/2 cup canned or cooked chickpeas
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon Apple cider vinegar
- 2 small or 1 large carrots
- I fresh root, about three inches turmeric
- pinch to taste salt
- pinch to taste black pepper
- 3 tablespoons water
For the Kañiwa bowl: 1. Prepare the Kañiwa according to the package instructions. Measure out about 1 1/2 cups of prepared kañiwa, and add this to your bowl. Package the leftover Kañiwa, and store it in the fridge for later use. 2. Arrange the hummus, tabouleh, pomegranate seeds, avocado, arugula, and chickpeas on top of the Kañiwa. 3. Top with fresh dressing. For the Carrot Turmeric Dressing: 1. Add the oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, carrots, turmeric, and water to a blender and blend until liquid. 2. Drizzle over kañiwa bowl.
Also by Lauren: Vegan Indian Recipes: Curried Cabbage and Potatoes
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Photos: Lauren Sacerdote