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 Post subject: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 8:09 am 
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ok quinoa and i have a very bad history.

the first time i made it myself it was so bland i couldnt stand it and dumped it.
the second time i made it i did rinse it and strain it but apparently not enough and it made me sick for like a week (because i kept eating it not realizing what was making me sick cause im stoopid)

i have some quinoa from like the bins at the grocery store where you can buy things by weight. everything i read conflicts itself. some things say just rinse and cook. other things say soak overnight.

what is the proper thing to do so i dont make myself ill again? as far as im concerned three strikes and you're out so quinoa is on its last leg with me

thx!

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 8:12 am 
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I just always toss it in a pot and cook it. Are you trying to eat it plain or are you following a recipe? One of my favorite recipes is Quinoa Puttanesca- it's on the ppk blog, do a google search and it should pop up.

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 8:13 am 
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I rinse with cool water in a strainer for less than a minute. Just swish it around and cook it.

I don't really understand how it is making you sick. Is it possible you have an allergy? Or maybe the store does not keep clean, fresh bulk bins?

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 8:28 am 
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huh, yeah, unless you're allergic i don't see why it would make you sick. the reason you rinse it is because it can be bitter if you don't, but there's nothing poisonous about it. I just quickly rinse it in a strainer. I've never soaked it.

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 9:00 am 
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I never rinse mine, just chuck it in the pot and away we go!

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 9:09 am 
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I've never rinsed either.


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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 9:09 am 
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i never used to rinse mine, but i got a different brand this time (no bulk bins around here) and when i opened the bag, it smelled like straight up poisin. so i rinsed it. i don't have a mesh strainer though, so it was a long and stupid ordeal, but i'd say just a quick rinse should be fine, if you need to rinse it at all!

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 9:38 am 
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everything i have read about quinoa is that it is covered in something called saponin which is a toxin and why animals dont eat it in the wild. that's why you are supposed to rinse it first. it causes a soapy residue and if you eat too much of it it has a "laxative effect" which is exactly what happened to me.

stomach pains and not diarhhea but i kept pooping anytime i ate something.

maybe ill just rinse it for longer this time.

the stuff that comes in a box might be prerinsed

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 9:57 am 
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I always thought it was just a bitterness issue; I didn't know the saponin can be toxic.

If you are worried about problems, my suggestion is to buy the pre rinsed boxes or bags. Unless your hfs is a lot cheaper, there is only $1 or so per lb difference in price between bobs red mill pre rinsed and bulk. Then if you decide you like it and want to buy in bulk you can experiment more with rinsing technique.

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 10:09 am 
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I've never rinsed it.

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 10:39 am 
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Count me in for another 'never rinsed' vote.

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 12:49 pm 
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I rinsed it the first couple of times I cooked quinoa. Then I forgot once and it didn't taste bitter so I've never rinse since. I usually buy it out of the bulk bins and even that must be prerinsed.

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 12:55 pm 
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I have done it both ways rinse and not rinse and I honestly do not see a difference. I do remember reading somewhere that they used to not rinse it before selling it but that most companies do now rince it. I would just buy the box kind to be on the safe side.


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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 1:00 pm 
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i must just be sensitive to quinoa for some reason.
very odd and random!!!

after i finish this batch i will buy the box kind and see if that helps

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 1:03 pm 
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here's the blurb on wikipedia about the saponin content:

Quinoa in its natural state has a coating of bitter-tasting saponins, making it unpalatable. Most quinoa sold commercially in North America has been processed to remove this coating. This bitterness has beneficial effects during cultivation, as the plant is unpopular with birds and thus requires minimal protection.[2] There have been attempts to lower the saponin content of Quinoa through selective breeding to produce sweeter, more palatable varieties which have proven difficult due to cross pollination contamination.[11]

The Toxicity category rating of Quinoa saponins are classified as a mild eye and respiratory irritant and a low gastrointestinal irritant.[12] The saponin is a toxic glycoside, a main contributor to its hemolytic effects when combined directly with blood cells. In South America, Quinoa saponin has many uses outside of consumption which includes detergent for clothing, washing and as an antiseptic for skin injuries.[13] High levels of oxalic acid in the leaves and stems are found in all species of the Chenopodium family, but are also present in the related plant families of Polygonaceae and Amaranthaceae.[14] The risks associated with quinoa are minimal, provided it is properly prepared and leaves are not eaten to excess.

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 1:29 pm 
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I also never rinse but hope the boxed version works out better for you.


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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 1:44 pm 
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I rinsed it the first time that I made it, but half of it clumped together and half went through the strainer. That was the end of rinsing for me.

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 2:00 pm 
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For years now, I've just toast mine for a minute or two, not long enough to give it color or anything, and it tastes the same as when I rinsed it.

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 2:01 pm 
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I rinse if I remember, and I buy from the bulk bins and in packages because they never have red quinoa in bulk and I like to mix the two.

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2011 2:12 pm 
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I used to rinse it, but one day I accidentally didn't and it made no difference whatsoever! So now I save myself the time and just don't bother rinsing at all. I also cook it with a pinch of salt and season it while it's still warm.


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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 12:32 pm 
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I usually just rinse mine for a minute or so under cold water and it's fine. As for the bland taste, I've always made it with vegetable broth instead of water. Same with rice. It's very very tasty that way! You can also add paprika or cayenne for a little heat. Last night I added oranges and pistachios and it was very good. I think grains are just begging to be dressed up. :)

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 12:45 pm 
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I generally just rinse it briefly then cook. I tried soaking it for about 10 minutes last time I made it and it didn't really make a difference.


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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 12:52 pm 
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I've never rinsed it, I don't think I've ever heard of rinsing it either. All the quinoa I cooked was from the whole foods bulk bins and my grandma makes it from some organic quinoa that's in a bag that's green. I've never soaked quinoa either. I like to put it in the rice cooker and I think it has the same ration to rice and cooking time.

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 1:19 pm 
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It is going to be bland on its own, sort of like rice is bland on its own. In fact, if I cook it plain, I use it much as I would rice: as a bed for a saucy stew, curry, stir fry, etc. If I want it to stand on it's own, I make a quinoa pilaf. The Quinoa and Chick Pea Pilaf in v'con is very good.
Or, just saute some onion and garlic in a bit of oil. I also like to add a sweeter vegetable such as diced red bell pepper or shredded carrot, to counter the bitterness of the quinoa. Then add in your quinoa and any herbs or spices you like, salt and pepper, and cook it in vegetable broth, tomato juice or vegetable juice, wine, or a combination of any of those.
You can also prepare it as a hot breakfast cereal with fresh or dried fruit, your favorite plant milk, cinnamon or other spices, any sweetener you like, sliced or crushed nuts; anything you would normally add to oatmeal.

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 Post subject: Re: how long do you soak/rinse your quinoa?
PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2011 1:49 pm 
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I understand why people might want to rinse it but have never been convinced enough to bother.

Quinoa can be bland if you don't use any seasoning at all. Maybe you just don't like it? I've never heard anything about soaking it overnight.


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