Welcome to another episode of “A Tasty and Healthy New Year Resolution Challenge”! When challenged to create a main dish using California Olive Oil and Bob’s Red Mill Quinoa Grain, I immediately went to comfort food. It’s typically a one pot dish that serves as a main entree for your meal. Casseroles came to mind and I thought of my favorite Dominican casserole, which is layered with mashed sweet plantains and in the middle, a layer of ground beef or ground sausage is waiting to surprise you. Topped with shredded cheese, it’s one of my favorite meals when I go home and here I recreated it using quinoa as my main layers.
- Simmer chicken broth and when bubbling, add quinoa and cook over medium low heat until add the broth is absorbed and the quinoa is cooked all the way through. Toss in a bowl and cool.
- While quinoa is cooking, heat a cast-iron pan over high heat and cook the sausage, making sure to break up the pieces. When halfway cooked and most of the fat is in the pan, add chopped onions and peppers and cook until tender. Reserve.
- Whisk together egg yolks and olive oil. Fold into cooled quinoa.
- Preheat oven to 400F degrees and grease an 8×8 inch pan with olive oil. Place a layer of quinoa on the bottom, alternating with the sausage mixture and topping with more quinoa. Sprinkle shredded cheese on top.
- Place in oven and bake for 15 to 25 minutes, until cheese is melted and casserole is cooked all the way through. If you want, finish it off on broil for 3 minutes to really broil your cheese.
- Serve with a side salad and enjoy!
Remember you can cook grains in any liquid! This time we used chicken broth, but you can cook quinoa in vegetable stock, carrot juice, or wine. Experiment with different liquids!
Whisking egg yolks and olive oil, not only adds structure to this casserole, but it develops a velvety texture when cooked, as well as adding overall flavor.