Quinoa Week: Quinoa loaf

Mmmm. Meatloaf. Well, kinda. Meatloaf is one of those comfort foods – especially for M. So, we just had to try this quinoa loaf recipe originally from Whole Foods! It was another great one! We made a couple adaptions to make it our own so to be sure to check out the original! The original called for frozen peas and sundried tomatoes. We weren’t quite feeling peas and sundried tomatoes, so off we went! We used bell peppers! MMMM. This hearty loaf had that “nutty” quality I now associate with quinoa with nice, mellow compliments from the bell peppers and onions. We also discovered it goes quite well with ranch dressing, ketchup and Schultz’s Sweet Heat hot sauce (M’s fave hot sauce, he recommends mixing the sweet heat with ranch for another great dipping sauce). As seen in the picture below, we had a side of zucchini and onions! It was a great hearty dish we’re definitely going to try again – we’re planning on experimenting with different veggies mixed in there. So, have fun! And, if you experiment, let me know how it turns out!

Yum, yum, yum!

What you need: 
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for the pan
8 ounces button mushrooms, sliced
PDS, to taste
1 can no-salt-added garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
3/4 cup rolled oats
2 cups cooked quinoa
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 medium white onion, diced (about 1 cup of diced onion)
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley and/or 1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme (we used thyme and not parsley)
What to do: 
Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease an 8-inch loaf pan with oil; set aside. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, diced peppers and cook, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms are golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Add PDS to taste. If you add the salt before the mushrooms are done cooking, the salt draws more water out of the mushrooms and prolongs the cooking process. Drain excess veggie juices and set aside.

Meanwhile, put beans, oats and 1/2 cup water into a food processor and pulse until almost smooth. In a large bowl, combine sautéed veggie mixture, bean mixture, quinoa, thyme, onion, salt and pepper. Transfer mixture to prepared loaf pan, gently pressing down and mounding it in the middle. Bake until firm and golden brown, 1 to 1 1/4 hours. Set aside to let rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

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