I had Quinoa Soup a couple times when I was traveling through Ecuador last month, and was surprised by how much I enjoyed it. Just as in France and, well, many countries, most of their stews and soups start with a slow saute of aromatics like onions. Potatoes are almost always added. Add a healthy green salad and a slice of whole grain bread and you've got a tasty, filling, healthy meal. It's easy to eliminate the chicken too, by using all vegetable broth and just eliminating chicken altogether at the end. No other changes need to be made. And then it's even cheaper! Making your own broth further reduces the cost. —TheWimpyVegetarian
6-7 cups soup
yellow onion, finely chopped, about 1 1/2 cups
large leek, white and light green parts, roughly chopped, about 1 1/2 cups
large shallot, minced, about 1/3 cup
serrano or poblano chili, minced
russet potato, small chopped, about 1/2 cup
fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
ground black pepper
vegetable broth, preferable homemade
chicken broth, preferably homemade
Juice from 1 lime
quinoa grain, well rinsed
Pecorino cheese, plus more for garnish, grated
1 1/2 cups
shredded roast chicken from 1 chicken breast
Heat the olive oil in a large pot. I used a large Le Crueset wide-mouthed pot. Add the onion, leek, shallot, chili, potato, thyme leaves, salt and pepper, and saute over medium heat until onions are softening (about 15 minutes). Stir frequently to prevent the potatoes from sticking to the pot too much. The mixture should be very fragrant.
Add the broth(s), lime juice and avocado and bring to a simmer. Simmer until potatoes and chilies are softened, about 10 - 15 minutes. Puree 2 cups of the mixture. I used a submersible blender and the cup that came with it, and it worked perfect! Pour the puree back into the soup.
Add the quinoa grain and simmer for 20 minutes. The quinoa grain should be completely cooked and look like little question marks.
Stir in the Pecorino cheese, shredded roast chicken and sherry and cook for another 5 minutes until the chicken is warm. For this, I just bought a chicken that was already roasted at the store to save time, but you can roast a large chicken breast, shred it, and add it to the soup instead.
Serve warm garnished with a little grated Pecorino cheese and a sprinkling of toasted pumpkin seeds. Serve with bread and a green salad to complete the meal.