Between post-holiday sickness and our trip to Kenya, I ended up taking about a month off of running. Even being at altitude and walking a lot, I lost a shocking amount of fitness. Coupled with the gluttony of the holidays and my normal routine being in a holding pattern while in another country, I’m a little above my fighting weight. I’m taking my time getting back into shape and using the luxury of no spring marathon to spend more time strength-training, which requires eating more protein than I usually do.
This quinoa breakfast combines the comfort and warmth of oatmeal with more protein. The addition of walnuts and a light drizzle of maple syrup almost made me forget I was eating quinoa. You can add whatever you normally add to your oatmeal – fruit, milk, nuts, etc. I made the whole batch and then stored the portions in individual containers, easy to grab for a quick breakfast on the go.
Cinnamon-Scented Breakfast Quinoa
Yields 4 1-cup servings
1 cup quinoa (red, white, or black)
1 1/2 cups water
2 cinnamon sticks
1/4 teaspoon salt
Wash quinoa in several changes of water in a bowl, rubbing grains and letting them settle before pouring off water (if quinoa does not settle, drain in a large fine-mesh sieve after each rinse), until water is clear.
Drain washed quinoa well in a large fine-mesh sieve.
Combine all ingredients in a heavy medium saucepan and bring to a boil, covered. Reduce heat to low and cook, covered, until water is absorbed and quinoa is tender, about 20 minutes.
Remove pan from heat and let stand, covered, 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and keep covered to keep warm. Remove cinnamon sticks.
Divide quinoa among bowls and top with walnuts, fruit, maple syrup or honey, milk, and sea salt.