For my last Vegan Mofo camp cooking experiment I wanted to try a technique I’d read about, Thermos Cooking. Certain grains can be slow cooked in a high quality thermos, there by saving on fuel. It worked well. Except dealing with the narrow opening. Getting the quinoa in was a bit messy, and getting it out even more difficult. But it did cook the quinoa while I was piloting the Westfalia back to California.
First, you need a high quality thermos that’s big enough. The Nissan and Stanley ones are well regarded, about 40 oz in capacity. I used a 40 oz Nissan to cook one cup dry quinoa, and it was filled up when done.
Second, you must preheat the thermos. Fill it all the way up with boiling water and let it sit for 15 minutes or so. Dump out the water.
Third, immediately fill the thermos with 1 cup quinoa and two cups boiling water. Cap tightly and give it a shake.
Fourth, occasionally give it another shake. When there is no detectable sloshing, it’s done, probably in a couple of hours. I put mine on the floor of the van and let the mountain roads do the shaking. Ordinarily, that drives me batty. But this time it was cool knowing that my lunch was steaming away.
Set it up at night and use it for breakfast.
Set it up while making breakfast as I did, and use it for lunch or dinner.
Other grains can be cooked this way, but I chose quinoa because of its taste, texture, and versatility.
1 C quinoa
2 C water
1/3 C diced red onion
1/3 C cilantro
1 bell pepper, diced
1-2 zucchini, diced
1 can black beans rinsed and drained
juice of 1-2 limes (zest if you can)
Cook the quinoa by any method. Add remaining ingredients and toss well. Allow to sit for a bit to blend flavors. Add other seasonings, like chili powder, cumin, salt/pepper, or hot sauce as desired.