Dinner/ Exercise/ Fitness

Amazing Dinner…Simply Put

I think I have found my new favorite recipe. Seriously. It was that good. No- it was great. Amazing actually and I savored every single last grain and then traced my index finger around the rim of the saucepan to get another link. Make this tomorrow. Seriously–it was SO easy. The most difficult thing would be to find the Taleggio cheese at the store. Search for it because it is amazing but if you can’t find it, try Brie.

The recipe came from Heidi Swanson’s Super Natural Cooking again. It was originally named “Quinoa and Crescenza with Sauteed Mushrooms” but I made it with Taleggio cheese and I wouldn’t change a thing. It was creamy, rich and deeply satisfying. I had with a glass of red wine for a total calorie count of 539. So good! I used to make risotto a lot when I needed something warm, cheesy and comforting but now I will be making this. Maybe again next week!

Here’s the recipe, my modifications made

Quinoa and Taleggio with Sauteed Spicy Mushrooms

Serves 1

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

2 tbsp chopped onion (about 1/4 of an onion)

1/4 cup dry quinoa

1/4 cup organic chicken stock

pinch of sea salt

pinch of red pepper flakes

1/2 cup water

4 ounces mushrooms, sliced

1 ounce taleggio cheese

1. Saute the onions and garlic in 1/2 tbsp of olive oil until the onions are soft. About 3-4 minutes. Add the quinoa, stock and a pinch of salt and let the stock reduce a bit. About 2 minutes.

2. Add the water and bring the quinoa mixture to a boil then return to a simmer and let simmer for about 15-20 minutes or until tender.

3. While that’s going, heat the remaining 1/2 tbsp of olive oil in a skillet and add the red pepper flakes and another small pinch of salt. Add the mushrooms and saute til golden.

4. When the quinoa has absorbed all the liquid, stir in the cheese. Put in a bowl and top with the mushrooms and enjoy each and every single bite. Heavenly.

441 calories



A note on quinoa:  always rinse your quinoa in a strainer before using it to wash away the natural bitter coating that it has.

I had a pretty good cardio session at the gym today. I did 20 minutes on the elliptical, 10 minutes on the bike, then went outside and walked around the big lake at my apartment complex (it’s about half a mile around) to get outside a bit. I miss my outdoor runs three times a week 🙁 Hopefully my leg will heal fast but for now elliptical/bike/walking doesn’t bother it!

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  • Kath
    December 19, 2007 at 5:38 pm

    We’re having quinoa tonight too!! it’s on the stove right now. Your mushroom dish looks delicious!

  • Christie
    December 19, 2007 at 5:51 pm

    This looks delicis! I have never had teleggio cheese but i love brie, i will have to check it out. Do you know if one ounce is equal to 1 or 2 tbsp? I have tried to make quinoa a number of times but cant seem to get it right so I will have to try your recipe.


  • Ryan
    December 19, 2007 at 6:54 pm

    I will stick with Pizza as my favorite and pass on anything with Mushrooms, eww gross. For those that are less kitchen savvy, what are some of these items that you discuss, like Chicken Stock, and crizenza, etc.

  • jaweber
    December 19, 2007 at 7:14 pm


    thats tough—I have a food scale so that’s how I know what 1 ounce is. I would say 1.5 tbsp but its hard to measure tbsp with a cheese like that because its not grated. I would do your best to eyeball it but its basically impossible to know exactly w/out a scale! Quinoa is so good for you and there’s so many ways to cook it. If you want to make this recipe but are wondering about the cheese , i would go to a fresh market or whole foods and ask the guy behind the counter of the specialty cheeses to just cut you a 2 or 3 ounce slice of the cheese. then at home, just cut that in half!

    pizza is good too. I know you hate mushrooms that’s why when we are apart I test all these recipes and enjoy them myself. when we are together we can eat pizza and stuffed shells 🙂

  • Jen
    December 19, 2007 at 7:21 pm


    One ounce = 2 tbsp.

  • hk
    December 19, 2007 at 7:31 pm

    not that it scares me off to try…but where do the calories in this meal come from? 1/4 dry quinoa usually adds up to about 170 calories (1cup cooked); and I know that mushrooms and onions are so low in cals…so are the other 250-ish calories coming from the cheese and olive oil? just curious to know about ingredients. I know how amazing telagio is…so totally worth the calories (good ones, too)…but just a curious question. THANKS! good luck tomorrow on the practicals, you’ll be great 🙂

  • jaweber
    December 19, 2007 at 7:37 pm


    1/4 quinoa= 212 (higher than you think!)
    cheese= 80
    chicken stock =4
    extra virgin olive oil= 120
    mushrooms = 25
    onions= basically nothing…10?

    You probably could cut down on the olive oil to make this a lower calorie dish but I use it for the monounsaturated fats and because i think it really contributes to the taste of the dish. Quinoa has more calories than we all think and because of this, i think it works better as a main dish than a side dish..i just like to add to it! And the 80 calories for the cheese was pretty good considering one ounce of brie is about 110.

    i might try it next time using only 1/2 tbsp of olive oil instead of 1 whole tbsp just to see if i could taste the difference!

  • hk
    December 20, 2007 at 6:38 am

    got ya, thanks! I love quinoa, and agree it makes a great main dish…adding chickpeas can be really yummy too! I’m not specifically worried about the calories from that meal, especially b/c they’re all coming from good, healthy, and TASTY food. I so appreciate a good splash of olive oil, and totally agree about its contributions to taste. THANKS! GOOD LUCK 🙂

  • katheats
    December 20, 2007 at 7:47 am

    Now my quinoa last night had 166 kcal for 1/4 a cup. It was on the box, so it must be accurate or the company would be sued! Where’s the difference? Are there different kinds?

  • katheats
    December 20, 2007 at 7:48 am

    PS. CalorieKing is also 170 per 1/4 cup…

  • jaweber
    December 20, 2007 at 10:54 am

    I’m at a loss about the quinoa. I bought in in bulk so it didn’t have the nutritional info on it….I plugged it into my CK food software and it showed that but I think maybe you are right and that’s wrong because that does seem awful high. 170 seems much better and i think that’s what Bob’s Red Mill is for 1/4 cup dry so I’m going to stick with that. Thanks!!