Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM)


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Recipe of the Week

Sept. 1, 2015

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Kathy Freston

We’re opening up this quarter’s Food for Life Society call to all of our members! Join us next week when we’ll be interviewing Kathy Freston live. On Wednesday, Sept. 9, call 888-461-2024 and enter code 7816737 at 8 p.m., eastern time.



The National Academy of Sciences has called quinoa "one of the best sources of protein in the vegetable kingdom" because of its excellent amino acid composition.


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Quinoa Pilaf

Quinoa Pilaf

Quinoa comes from the high plains of the Andes Mountains, where it is nicknamed "the mother grain" for its life-giving properties. It cooks quickly, much quicker than rice, and as it cooks the germ unfolds like a little tail. Be sure to rinse it using a fine mesh strainer before cooking to remove its bitter-tasting coating.

Makes 8 servings


1 yellow or red onion, chopped
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped carrot
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 cups dry quinoa, washed and dried
3 cups boiling water or vegetable broth (add 1 teaspoon salt if using water or unsalted broth)


Sauté onion, celery, carrot, and garlic until they start to caramelize or turn brown. Add cumin, oregano, and quinoa. Stir constantly and cook for about 3 more minutes to allow spices and quinoa to toast. Add boiling salted water or vegetable broth. Cover and cook for about 20 minutes or until all the liquid has completely absorbed and the quinoa has “bloomed.” Do not stir during cooking and make sure the lid is tight to prevent moisture from escaping. Remove from heat and allow quinoa to sit for 5 to 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork and serve.

Stored in a covered container in the refrigerator, leftover Quinoa Pilaf will keep for up to 3 days.

Tip: For a variation, omit cumin and oregano and add 1 teaspoon dried thyme, rosemary, and/or sage.

Per serving: Calories: 172; Fat: 2.6 g; Saturated Fat: 0.3 g; Calories from Fat: 13.8%; Cholesterol: 0 mg; Protein: 6 g; Carbohydrates: 32 g; Sugar: 3.6 g; Fiber: 3.1 g; Sodium: 318 mg; Calcium: 45 mg; Iron: 4.4 mg; Vitamin C: 1.7 mg; Beta Carotene: 647 mcg; Vitamin E: 0.8 mg

Source: The Survivor’s Handbook: Eating Right for Cancer Survival by Neal D. Barnard, M.D. and Jennifer Reilly, R.D.

Please feel free to tailor Physicians Committee recipes to suit your individual dietary needs. 

  Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine

5100 Wisconsin Ave., N.W.
Suite 400
Washington, D.C. 20016
Contact: 202-686-2210

Food for  Life

Food for Life is an award-winning Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine program designed by physicians, nurses, and registered dietitians that offers cancer, diabetes, and kids classes that focus on the lifesaving effects of healthful eating. Each class includes information about how certain foods and nutrients work to promote health, along with cooking demonstrations of simple and nutritious recipes that can be recreated easily at home. Learn more here >>

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