Quinoa stir-fry

I was never one to make resolutions, I'm REALLY bad at keeping them so I stopped making them. Once 2011 hit and I was in Korea, there was a moment when I caught myself gorging on total junk I made the decision that it was time to get back to eating better foods. My diet was total shit for quite a while and I couldn't even remember the last time I had a healthy home cooked meal, something I used to do by making large quantities and keep in the fridge to keep me going during the week.

When I was a kid my diet consisted of about four different items: pasta with tomato sauce, chicken fingers, ice-cream, rice. I was probably the pickiest person ever and my parents indulged me in this bad habit (tsk, tsk!) so it took me a very long time to appreciate things like a zucchini. I still don't like vegetables very much but if I eat them they need to be prepared a certain way and with certain flavors. I found this quinoa recipe on Epicurious and adjusted it a bit to make it better (by adding more veggies, who woulda thunk!) and it's become a staple for lunch or dinner. I tried quinoa last year and my first impression didn't go over very well, I thought it tasted awful but that's probably because I ate it plain as a side with my chicken. Now that I've mixed it with other ingredients it's soooo good and I can't get enough!

Uncooked quinoa
After it's cooked little springs are released from the grains.

One of my favorite veggies, I try to add mushrooms to everything.
I sautee the onions and garlic first and then add the rest of the veggies after.
Add red bell pepper.

I like the texture of shredded chicken so I cook it in a separate pan, cool, and add it to the quinoa and vegetables.

Original recipe from Self magazine and my version:
- 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 2 small carrots, julienned
- 1 roasted red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 zucchini, halved and sliced
- 1 cup snow peas, trimmed
- 1 cup cremini mushrooms, sliced
- 4 ounces chicken breast, shredded
- 2 teaspoons soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper