Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Cranberry Ginger Quinoa & Beef 'Stew-Fry'

This cranberry craze isn't going away anytime soon... or at least until this massive box of dried cranberries is gone from my pantry. Paired it with some quinoa and a few shreds of beef--- and voila---- a healthy comforting dinner that is sure to satisfy you even on the coldest (or warmest, lately) winter nights! Note: Quinoa is a grain but super high in both protein and fiber, so amazingly good for you and you can cook this and eat it with just about anything. Think of it as a blank slate guilt free carb! Want to make the vegetarian version? Use vegetable stock & double up on the veggies vs the beef, it's all good! This recipe is dubbed a "stew-fry" because it is not rally fried, and certainly not as thick or fatty as most stews. But the flavor, oh it's still there. Enjoy!!

Cranberry Ginger Quinoa & Beef Stew-Fry

1/2 lb beef stew chunks (pre-cut from the grocery store)
1/2 cup chopped carrots
1/2 large white onion, chopped
1/3 cup red wine, whatever you have will work just fine
1/4 cup unsalted beef stock (for the stew-fry) + 1 cup beef stock (for quinoa)
salt & pepper
ground ginger
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup water

Start by soaking the quinoa in a bowl of cold water for 5-10 minutes. This rinses off some tart residue for later. In a small-medium sauce pan, add 1 cup beef stock with 1/2 cup water. Then, add the 1 cup of quinoa (rinsed and dried). Add dried cranberries, a pinch of salt, pepper, and ginger and let cook the way you would any rice or grain.

Meanwhile, in a sauté pan, add a touch of olive oil, and the diced onions & carrots. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and ginger. Let them cook until translucent, roughly 5-10 minutes. Then, add the shreds of beef stew and sprinkle with more salt, pepper, and ginger. Add the red wine, and let the alcohol cook out for about 30 seconds (it will sizzle a LOT at first, then calm down). Then, add the beef stock, lower the heat & cover. Let cook until the beef is cooked through (will be firm to the touch in the middle). When quinoa is finished, serve it up and devour.

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