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Author Notes: This is my go to pot luck offering. It is a hearty side dish, tasty and a good way to introduce people to quinoa, if they have never tried it before. I usually make at least a double batch (leftovers keep very well, just keep the almonds separate), and if I am cooking for any vegetarians, I simply sub the chicken broth for vegetable broth. The original recipe came from the back of my 10-lb Costco bag of quinoa, so long ago, I do not remember the brand. I've made tweaks over the years and basically cook it from memory now, although I'm sure I still have the recipe clipping stashed somewhere... It's a great combination of sweet (from the cranberries), savory (do NOT omit the bay leaf!) and gentle spice (cinnamon). I've inspired many quinoa-newbies with this one! —TheFritschKitchen
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds
- 1 cinnamon stick, about 3 inches long
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 cup uncooked quinoa
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1 3/4 cups chicken broth
- Heat a medium sauce pan over medium high heat. Add almonds and toss a few times, until they are toasted and smell fragrant. Remove from pan and set aside (if a few remain in the pan, that is ok)
- Return pan to heat and add cinnamon stick and bay leaf, allow to toast for about 1 minute. Add quinoa and toast as well, about 4-5 minutes. There will be popping sounds and a lovely, toasty fragrance will fill the air.
- Add cranberries and chicken broth, carefully! Chicken broth will sputter and hiss as it hits the hot pan. Stir well and bring mixture to a boil. Cover, reduce to simmer, 20 minutes.
- Turn off heat and keep covered. Let sit for about 5 minutes. Fluff with fork and add salt, as necessary (depending on broth used, you may not need much, if any, salt). Top with toasted almonds and enjoy!
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Recipe for Lettuce-Free Salad