Cajun Style Dirty Quinoa

I originally posted this Cajun delight over at Foodies Unite but it is tooooo perfect to not share here as part of the Quinoa Goddess recipe box!

Quinoa has almost exclusively replaced rice and pasta in my house. I love the versatility – the ease – the way that quinoa quickly adapts to whatever recipe I pop it into.  It imparts a slight nutty flavor but when cooked with herbs, takes on the scent and flavor of what you are adding – perfect!

When I was reading the February 2012 Bon Appetit, there was a recipe for Dirty Farro … and I loooooove dirty rice.  In 2 days in Louisiana, I think I ate it 3 times so this recipe was a no-brainer to add into the rotation. I did make a few adaptations, including the exchange of farro for quinoa but I noted it in the recipe.

For more great information on quinoa, check out the Quinoa Goddess!

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Cajun Style Dirty Quinoa
Author: 
Recipe type: Side or Main Course
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Works as a side to a Cajun feast or as a main course all on its own!
Ingredients
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 4 cups of cooked quinoa
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt plus more
  • 1 pound fresh breakfast sausage, casings removed (if necessary)
  • ½ – ¾ pound chicken livers, trimmed, chopped
  • 1½ cups finely chopped onions
  • 1½ cups finely chopped celery (I did a rough chop since I like it bigger)
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ⅔ cup thinly sliced scallions (dark-green parts only)
  • 1 cup celery leaves from inner stalks
Instructions
  1. Prepare quinoa as per instructions on package until you have 4 cups of cooked quinoa.
  2. Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in pot over medium heat. Add sausage and livers; cook, breaking up sausage into small pieces with a spoon, until sausage is browned and cooked through, about 8 minutes.
  3. Add onions, celery, garlic, cumin and cayenne pepper and a pinch of salt.
  4. Sauté for 2 – 3 minutes.
  5. Add 1 cup water; bring to a simmer.
  6. Cook, uncovered, until liquid is reduced by about half, about 8 – 10 minutes.
  7. Stir in cooked quinoa; simmer until liquid is absorbed, about 5 minutes.
  8. Stir in scallions; garnish with celery leaves.

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