Masala Brown Basmati Rice and Red Quinoa  [Indian Fusion RECIPE]

Brown rice has long been known as a healthy grain known for its fiber and mineral content. Add it to quinoa, a tiny seed that is packed not only with fiber and minerals but with protein, and you have a supercharged recipe. My recipe for Masala Brown Basmati Rice and Red Quinoa gets its flavor from a special blend of spices that are commonly used to season rice in India. Masala Brown Basmati Rice and Red Quinoa is a simple recipe that can be served as a side dish to accompany any meal. I like to serve it at lunch as a healthy vegetarian dish along with a cup of hot soup. 

STEPS:

1. Rinse the rice and quinoa separately in cool water and drain well. A fine metal strainer will help draining the quinoa.


2. In a medium pan on medium heat, bring the rice, 1 1/2 cups of water, bay leaf, cinnamon, cardamom and peppercorns to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer for approximately 40 minutes, until liquid is absorbed and the grains are just tender. Do not overcook. Remove the pan from the heat and remove the lid. Let the rice sit for 10 minutes then discard the whole spices. Drain off any remaining water. Fluff with a fork.


3. In another pan on medium heat, bring the quinoa and 1 cup of water to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat when the germ has sprouted from the skins. Let stand for 5 minutes. Drain off any remaining water. Fluff with a fork.


4. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add the mustard seeds and cumin seeds. Fry until the mustard seeds start to pop then add the onion and fry until it turns a rich brown color. Reduce the heat to low. Stir in the ground cumin, garam masala, coriander, red chile powder, turmeric and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Fry for 1 minute. Add the garlic, carrot and spinach. Fry for another 3 minutes.


5. Gently add the rice and quinoa and mix so the masala covers the grains completely. Add the remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Cook for another 2-3 minutes until the flavors are blended.

Ingredients:

1 cup brown basmati rice
1/2 cup red quinoa
1 bay leaf
1 cinnamon stick
2 green cardamom pods
10 whole black peppercorns
2 cloves
3 Tbs olive oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 red onion, cut into long slivers
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp garam masala
1/4 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp red chile powder
1/4 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp salt, divided
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup grated carrot
‚Äč1 cup chopped fresh baby spinach