I spent a few glorious days in Napa Valley a few weeks ago to attend the Food & Culinary Professionals‘ culinary workshop at the Culinary Institute of America. Wow, that’s a lot of culinary in one sentence! And it was a lot of culinary delight during my time in Napa. I’ll be talking about my trip with Liz in an upcoming Cooking with the Moms podcast but thought that, in the meantime, I’d share a few tidbits and a fabulous recipe that I sampled.
One highlight of the workshop was visiting the new studio kitchen of Cheryl Forberg, RD (dietitian for The Biggest Loser TV show) , where I sampled this High-Pro Guaco from her latest book, “Cooking with Quinoa for Dummies“.
I had seen Cheryl’s kitchen a couple of years ago when construction began and it was amazing to see the finished product. Having just completed a 6-month renovation of my kitchen it was great fun to compare notes! Just when I thought I had a big kitchen suitable for videos and cooking demos… Cheryl’s kitchen knocks it out of the park and can seat 50 people! What an amazing place to cook.
Makes 3 Cups
You can serve this as an appetizer with tortilla chips or as a side dish or for lunch. I enjoyed this recipe at Cheryl’s house, and was delighted when she packed up a container for me to take for lunch on the airplane ride home.
1. If you don’t have cooked quinoa on hand, cook the quinoa according to package directions and set it aside to cool.
2. Halve, seed, and peel the avocados; then dice them into 1/2-inch cubes. Place the diced avocado and the lime juice in a medium-sized mixing bowl and toss gently to coat. Set aside.
3. In a small mixing bowl, combing the fire-roasted (or fresh) tomatoes, cilantro, garlic, Chipotle Puree, and salt. Mix well.
4. Add the tomato mixture and the cooked quinoa to the avocado cubes. Toss gently and serve immediately with corn chips.
*To make the Chipotle Puree, puree one 7-ounce can chipotle chile peppers in adobo sauce with 1/4 cup water in a blender or food processor until smooth. Store leftover puree in the refrigerator for up to a month and use a teaspoon or two to spice up your recipes.
Here I am taking a picture of Cheryl’s “girls” – a flock of chickens. I’m a little jealous of their relaxed life in the beautiful countryside of Napa. On my final night in Napa I stayed with Cheryl and enjoyed a fresh hard cooked egg for breakfast, courtesy of one of these “girls”.
Here is what you might eat if you spend the night at the home of the dietitian for The Biggest Loser TV show – quinoa breakfast cereal with nuts, a locally-grown kiwi, a fresh hard-cooked egg, and a steaming cup of cappuccino. I can’t wait for my next trip!