«

»

Mar 24

Health Foods A-Z: Q

Now Q is a difficult alphabet to find health foods from. And most of the ingredients in my kitchen do not start with Q. So, I am not going to write my regular Health Foods on one particular food with its recipe. Instead, I will just share what my research has found for me.

Some of the healthy foods that begin with Q are Quinoa, Quince (fruit that looks like pear) and Quinine. This is not a comprehensive list, but is good to begin with. Below is a detailed description of what these things are, where they are found, what they look like and why you should have them, apart from some of their culinary uses.

1. Quinoa: Quinoa, pronounced kwin-wah, is a seed that is gaining popularity in he US, Europe, China and Japan,

thanks to its many nutritional benefits. It originated in ancient Peru, and is considered a superfood. Wikipedia says that Quinoa has very high protein content, and is considered a source of complete protein. It is also a good source of dietary fiber, phosphorus, magnesium and iron. It is also a source of calcium. It is also gluten free and considered easy to digest.  Because of its great nutritional value, it is being considered for human occupied space flights by NASA.

Quinoa looks like couscous and is as versatile as rice. It has a natural bitter coating to protect it from birds, which can be removed by soaking in water for 5-10 minutes. Most commercially available packaging is pre soaked, but you should check the instructions on the label to be sure.

Quinoa is a healthy substitute for rice, can be served by itself, as a side dish with oil, salt and pepper. It can also be used in stir fried preparations, with salads or in stews.

2. Quince: Quince is defined in the dictionary as ‘A hard, acid, pear-shaped fruit used in preserves or as flavoring.’ These belong to the pear family, but must be baked or frozen before eating to remove their acidity.

Once ripe, it is yellowish and has a hard exterior. They can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. The seeds should not be consumed in large quantities, as they can be poisonous, so it is best to discard them. Quince is a seasonal fruit, and is found in autumn to early winter.

Quince has a pleasant fragrance when ripe. When raw, it is white, but turns a deep red upon cooking. In order to get the deepest red, aluminum cookware is recommended.

Quince is used in jams, jellies, marmalade and a lot of middle eastern cuisine. Some chefs replacing a portion of the apples used to make apple pies to enhance the flavor. Quince is also used in pork dishes, and is a good complement to lamb, turkey, and duck. Quinces can also be baked, much the same as apples.

3. Quinine: Quinine, pronounced kwin-een, is a natural crystalline alkaloid that has fever reducing, pain killing, anti-malarial and analgesic properties. and a bitter taste (according to Wikipedia). Apart from being used as an effective cure for malaria, it is also the flavor component of tonic water and bitter lemon. It is popularly used as a cocktail, combined with gin called gin and tonic.

That’s a summary of all the foods that begin with Q. No recipes this time, but I will make up for that soon!

This post is part of a series on health foods. I have previously written about Avocado, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Dates, Eggs, Fennel, Green chickpeas or chholiya, Honey, Iceberg lettuce, Jackfruit, Kidney Beans, Lentils, Milk, Nectarine, Olives and Peas.

3 pings

  1. Health Foods A-Z: Tomato | Saumya's Kitchen

    […] Honey, Iceberg lettuce, Jackfruit, Kidney Beans, Lentils, Milk, Nectarine, Olives, Peas, the alphabet Q, Radish and […]

  2. Health Foods A-Z: Vinegar | Saumya's Kitchen

    […] Honey, Iceberg lettuce, Jackfruit, Kidney Beans, Lentils, Milk, Nectarine, Olives, Peas, the alphabet Q, Radish, Spinach, Tomato and the letter […]

  3. Foods A-Z: Xacuti Chicken | Saumya's Kitchen

    […] Honey, Iceberg lettuce, Jackfruit, Kidney Beans, Lentils, Milk, Nectarine, Olives, Peas, the alphabet Q, Radish, Spinach, Tomato, the letter U, Vinegar and Water […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>