Quinoa with Beetroot, Avocado & Chorizo Recipe

I have cooked many risotto recipes in my time but when asked if I'd ever tried this I went as red as a beetroot.  I was embarrassed because I'd not even considered using such a sweet vegetable in a risotto before; smoothies, soups, salads, even cakes, yes, but never had I even thought of a beetroot risotto.

Quinoa was used here instead of risotto rice. It is quite similar to risotto rice in texture and the avocado adds even further to the softness. I wanted to make use of the remaining avocado from the few I had bought for an avocado and lime cheesecake, and it worked here as a treat.

This recipe has so many delightful elements - the soft quinoa, the sweet beetroot, the spiciness of the cumin and of course, the rich texture of that delightful avocado. It is served at room temperature, or even as a cold salad but the outcome is very, very pleasing.

Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
Serves: 4

160 g uncooked quinoa
250 ml tomato juice
250 ml water
250g pre-cooked chorizo, diced
2 pre-cooked baby beetroots, diced
1 small onion
1 avocado, diced

For the Dressing:
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tbsp lime juice
1/2 tsp ground cumin
salt & pepper to taste

1. Rinse your uncooked quinoa, then place with the tomato juice and water in a small saucepan, bring to the simmer. Cover and cook for about 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until most of the moisture has been absorbed. Remove from heat, stir every now and then to fluff quinoa until the liquids have been fully absorbed.

2. Add the pre-cooked diced chorizo and stir in to the cooked quinoa.

3. Slice the onion and cook with a teaspoon of oil until softened.  

4. Combine the quinoa and chorizo with the now cooked onion and baby beetroot. Add the diced avocado and drizzle the dressing on top. Stir to combine and serve with diced feta cheese.