Quinoa Stuffed Aubergines – Berenjenas Rellenas con Quinoa

I love quinoa. I learned about it, while living in the US from a friend of the family’s, who is from Ecuador. She explained that it was the “miracle” food of the Incas. And when I hear about something new and healthy, I immediately want to try it, of course. Fast forward a few years, and I’m still eating quinoa. But the thing is I hardly vary my recipe and it’s starting to get boring.
So, for dinner tonight, I’d thought I would pair a traditional Mediterranean vegetable with my favourite (pseudo) cereal.
For nutritional information about quinoa, the World’s Healthiest Foods site is a good reference.
Quinoa Stuffed Aubergines
Ingredients, for 4
  • 2 medium or large aubergines
  • 1 large tomato, cut into squares
  • 1 medium courgette, peeled and cut into squares
  • 1 medium onion, cut julienne style
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons thyme
  • 3 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • a pinch of ground cloves
  • sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon parsley
  • olive oil
  • 1 cup of uncooked quinoa
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • freshly grated parmesan cheese, for garnish (optional)
Prepare the quinoa with chicken broth instead of water, in advance. (Quinoa usually is cooked with double the amount of liquid as the amount of dry quinoa. Bring the broth to a boil, add the dry quinoa and simmer 10-15 minutes. Let stand 5-10 minutes before using with the rest of this recipe.)Wash and cut the tops and bottoms of the aubergines. Cut the aubergines in halves and scoop out the pulp, leaving about a 1 cm core. Sprinkle with salt and set aside. Cut the pulp into squares.

In a wok or frying pan, over medium heat add about 5 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the onion and garlic and saute until slightly transparent. Add the aubergine pulp, courgette, and saute about 5 minutes. Add the tomato, thyme, cumin seeds, and a pinch of ground cloves and cook until aubergine and courgette are tender. Add sea salt, to taste.
Mix the cooked quinoa with the cooked vegetables; add chopped parsley and toss. Stuff each aubergine shell with the quinoa mixture.
In a glass ovenproof dish, place the stuffed aubergines and drizzle generously with olive oil on top and around.
Bake at 180C for 15 minutes or until the shells are tender. The quinoa will bake as well and become crisp. If you do not like it crisp, you may want to add a bit more olive oil over each aubergine.
Place on serving dish and garnish with parmesan cheese and more parsley.

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