Eating Healthy and Sleeping Better

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I shared my To-Do list a little while ago here, and a major part of that list had to do with my eating and sleeping habits. What happens with me is that unless I have a visible, tangible problem with my body I NEVER try to make any changes in my routine. I’d eat the same junk, not exercise, sleep at odd hours and just put my body through hell so long as it does not act up! Its terrible I know, but I need a jolt to get moving!

Sometime last month I decided I had enough damage in my kitty to undo, so I got around making some key changes. First, I addressed my sleeping issues. The first few nights I forced myself to sleep at 11 pm. An easy way of doing this was to exercise in the evening around 6. In fact that was my schedule last year when right after work I’d hit the gym, sweat it out, get home at 8, have dinner, bathe and I’d be fast asleep by 10-10.30.

It took me just 3 consecutive nights of sleeping on time to set my body clock right! Next on the agenda : breakfast! I am sure you have read a thousand times how important it is to have a good breakfast in the morning which does not mean 11 30 a.m!! Once I started waking up on time, I had plenty of time in the morning  to cook a good breakfast and start my day well.

I have been experimenting with healthy food options, which if you are a foodie like me, you’d understand is easier said than done! To put aside my cheesy scrambled eggs + sausages breakfast aside was too much to ask of me! Anyways, I decided to give Quinoa a go but couldn’t quite figure how to make something which I’d love. Give me anything pretty and watch me wolf it down (pun intended)! I had to make the whole thing look attractive or I couldn’t bring myself to eat it!

So here is my recipe of the Quinoa + Caramelized Broccoli salad :

You’ll need:

1. A measure of Quinoa, I take half a cup
2. Double the measure of water
3. A cup of broccoli florets. Take as many as you like. You can replace this with bell peppers, or zucchini or any other vegetable of your choice.
4. 1 small onion, finely sliced
5. A few cloves of garlic (optional)
6. Feta cheese or parmesan for garnish (optional)

Preparation Time : 25 minutes (approx) to cook quinoa

Cooking Time : 8 minutes

1. Take a measure of Quinoa in a sauce pan and add double the measure of water and a pinch of salt. Bring it to boil and then simmer and let it cook. This takes about 25 minutes to completely cook and absorb all the water. I actually tried soaking my quinoa overnight and cooked it the next morning, but the quinoa turned pretty bitter. I have no idea where I went wrong, but I have since only cooked it the same morning! Although once you’ve cooked the quinoa, you can store the extra portion for the next day.

2. In a flat pan and a teaspoon of olive oil, add your garlic and wait till it starts to burn a little. Now add the sliced onion and sprinkle a pinch of sugar. Toss it around and let the onion change colors to a golden brown.

3. Add the broccoli now and toss it gently with the onions and garlic. I usually do not cook the broccoli much as I like to keep it crunchy. Its up to you how much you’d like it to be caramelized at this point. It usually takes about a couple of minutes.

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4. Now add two table spoons of cooked quinoa in the pan and toss it around with the rest of the vegetables. Stir everything for a few minutes, add a bit more salt to taste, sprinkle some black pepper and done!

5. I like to add a bit of feta or parmesan on top (just a little) to add some flavor, but its completely optional. In fact skip dairy altogether if you’d like!

I also like to use this to make stuffed omelet and it makes it a lot more filling.

Do you see how pretty this thing looks? I know its not the healthiest way of eating quinoa but its definitely very tasty! I’d love to know how you cook your quinoa, seriously need some options! Can you tell I am on a cooking spree? I have actually been doing a lot of baking as well, inspired by my food blogger friends! Will share more on that soon!

Have a great week ahead!

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