Tuesday, October 9 Red Beans and Quinoa (Cookin’ Crunk) and Grilled Asparagus Rating: 3.75

We bought four, yes four, new cookbooks at Veg Fest over the weekend and I was dying to take one out for a test drive. I wanted to make something fairly simple, but hearty and have leftovers for lunch for the rest of the week. I settled on the Red Beans and Quinoa recipe in Cookin’ Crunk. I thought it was a clever spin on an old, familiar dish. My brain was still in another time zone, so I made a fairly large error when I started cooking which I think may have impacted the overall flavor of the dish. I added the bell peppers to the pot way too early and I think they just cooked down too much. I also had an issue with all of the water not cooking off when the beans were done. I had to spoon out quite a bit of it and along with it, some of the seasonings. It was sad. I was still worried there was too much water left when I added the quinoa, but it absorbed it pretty quickly, so that at least worked out ok. We both felt like the dish overall needed a little bit of a flavor boost – again, it was probably my bell pepper error. The recipe recommends serving it with hot sauce and that really did make a big difference, so if you do make it, have some on hand. We did like it though and will probably make it again, but maybe with a few tweaks. 


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