Quinoa has become a popular cereal in Cyprus in the last few years. It is served not only at home but in restaurants as well. People started recognising the valuable ingredients of this crop.
Quinoa is an annual flowering plant in the Amaranth family grown as a crop for its edible seeds. The seeds are rich in protein, dietary fibre, B vitamin and dietary minerals, more so than any other grains. Quinoa originated in the Andean region of north-western South America. It was first used to feed livestock 5,200–7,000 years ago, and for human consumption 3,000–4,000 years ago.
The plant thrives at high altitudes and its cultivation has spread to more than 70 countries, including Kenya, India, the United States and European countries. As a result of increased popularity and consumption quinoa crop prices tripled between 2006 and 2014
After boiling, which is the typical preparation for eating the seeds, quinoa is 72% water, 21% carbohydrates, 4% protein, and 2% fat. In a 100 gms serving, cooked quinoa provides 120 kcal of food energy and is a rich source of manganese and phosphorus.
Quinoa can be used as a cereal, as a salad with additions of vegetables or fruit, or in any other form one chooses to have it.
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