“Kwi-no-uh?” This was my mother the first time she saw quinoa a few years ago. Luckily, I’d been eating it for awhile and the first product I’d ever bought had the pronunciation on the box: keen-wah.
Today, you can find quinoa everywhere. It has made its way through the fancy restaurants into the mid-scale restaurants. You can buy big bags at Costco or Sam’s for the same price as a tiny bag at the health food store 4 or 5 years ago. The Regional Office for Latin America and The Carribbean at the United Nations has declared 2013 the International Year of Quinoa.
Quinoa has arrived.
If you don’t know what quinoa is, you are missing out. Quinoa was referred to as “the mother of all grains” by the Andean peoples of South America. It is the only whole grain that is a complete source of protein, containing all nine essential amino acids (which, if you have forgotten from long ago classes, means your body doesn’t make them so you have to eat them to get them). Incan warriors were powered by quinoa.
i heart keenwah sent me some samples of their Ginger Peanut quinoa clusters snacks.
Ginger Peanut reminds me of eating at a Thai Restaurant, because that’s one of the few places I’ve had ginger and peanut feature prominently together. Sometimes, you get a little more ginger than others and get a bit of a zip. It has a little bit of a flavor reminiscent of sesame seeds, though there are none. These are small, hard clusters, much like a nut cluster. They are full of different forms of organic quinoa: whole grain quinoa, quinoa flakes, and quinoa crisps. All natural, tasty and flavorful, as well as healthy. I guess I’ll join the ranks and say “i heart keenwah”, too.