Appears in

Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

  • About

quinoa Chenopodium quinoa, provided the principal grain crop in the region of the Andes before the conquest of America, and is still an important staple food there. It is not a typical cereal but is used as if it were. The plant has green leaves like spinach (a relative), grows to 150–60 cm (5'), and produces great quantities of tiny white or pink seeds in large sorghum-like clusters. These are typically white or pink, but among the numerous cultivars are many which display other bright colours, including black, yellow, and orange.