SuperFood Series 2016: Smoky Red Quinoa, Potato & Parsnip Chowder
The traditional "chowder" of the U.S. Northeast is a soup made with potatoes and any other veggies on hand that is simmered over low fire. Our Smoky Red Quinoa, Potato & Parnsnip Chowder has South American influences and a nice smokiness from ground chipotle powder. The best part about this dish? It is a healthy choice that incorporates superfood ingredients.
Red quinoa is actually a seed though often classified as a whole grain. Red quinoa cooks up a little less fluffy and more crunchy than white quinoa but is nutritionally similar. Quinoa is one of the most notable superfoods for a myriad of reasons. It serves as a complete plant-based protein, contains high levels of antioxidant flavonoids and anti-inflammatory phytonutrients, and is loaded with fiber and minerals.
Parsnips are a root vegetable related to carrots that contain high levels of potassium, folate and vitamin C. These veggies are also high in both soluble and insoluble fiber as well as antioxidants (which some may find as a surprise due to parsnips' lack of color).
Red bell peppers, cultivated for over 9,000 years, are particularly known for their high vitamin C content (vitamin C is beneficial as an antioxidant and helps with iron absorption). Bell peppers are also a good source of vitamin E and antioxidant carotenoids (such as beta-carotene and zeaxanthin) with anti-inflammatory properties.
Potatoes can be classified as a more "controversial" superfood because, though loaded with nutritional benefits, their preparation is often not the healthiest. To be clear, we're referring to whole potatoes with their skin- and not French fries! Potatoes are rich in vitamins and minerals like potassium, quercetin (an antioxidant good for the immune system), and vitamin B6 (essential for metabolic processes). Potatoes are also a great fiber source.