i am decidedly not a morning person.
there are few things i look forward to in the sunrise hours than a really hot cup of strong coffee and the hopes of a few more winks of sleep.
there are some mornings, however, usually weekends or holidays, that i have a little bit of a fire under me to get into the kitchen to stir and bake up something for my crew. pancakes, frittatas, waffles, or a breakfast casserole of some sort are usually in my arsenal. often i seem to gravitate toward oats, which i really love, in small doses. lots of oats, and even oats in general for some, aren’t always a great idea for someone with gluten issues.
enter quinoa. quinoa is a newly loved grain alternative. the pseudograin is actually a seed, belonging to a family called a dicot. one of quinoas most impressive characteristics is that it is a complete protein by itself, meaning it contains all the essential amino acid building blocks. for this reason, i love using it instead of oats sometimes. bumping up the protein on the breakfast plate, in addition to the sides of eggs and bacon, is always welcome in my house.
just like oats and most things these days it seems, there is another side to the coin. quinoa has critics. that little seed also contains a few little compounds called lectin, saponins, and protease inhibitors that can cause tummy and immune issues in some. i certainly wouldn’t encourage an all-quinoa-all-the-time diet. and pay attention to how your body responds when you eat it… as if us gluten-free folks aren’t acutely aware of how our bodies respond to everything.
so when the recipe redux ladies wanted us to use something new for the new year, i decided to switch out my usual oats for the higher protein quinoa in this apple pie quinoa bake. i enjoyed quinoa in place of oats for a tasty oatmeal in my book but not in a baked breakfast.
i’ll be adding this one to the list for when the baking bug hits.
Apple Pie Quinoa Bake
- 1 1/2 cups red quinoa uncooked
- 1/4 cup flaxmeal
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon cloves
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 apples peeled, seeded, and chopped
- 3/4 cup chopped pecans
- 1/4 cup raisins
- 2 cups milk
- 2 large eggs
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/4 cup organic canola oil
- 2 teaspoons vanilla paste or extract
- Preheat oven to 375°.
- Combine first 11 ingredients in a medium bowl. Combine remaining ingredients in another bowl. Add liquid ingredients to quinoa mixture; stir well to combine.
- Pour mixture into a lightly greased 9-inch deep dish pie plate (or 8-inch baking dish). Bake at 375° for 45-50 minutes or until the center is set. Allow to cool for 15 minutes before cutting.
- Serve with additional maple syrup or a dollop of whipped cream, if desired.