Vegetarian Paella de Quinoa Recipe by Chef Julian Medina

After success in New York's Theater District and Upper East Side, Mexican chef Julian Medina recently opened his first Toloache spot downtown on Thompson Street. Quinoa, pickled Mexican vegetables, hon-shimeji mushrooms, asparagus, and black truffle aioli make up this healthy, vegetarian Paella de Quinoa recipe, just one of the delicious entrees on the menu at Toloache Thompson.

Courtesy of Toloache
Country of Origin

For the Black Truffle Aioli:

  • 2 cups oil
  • 1 egg yolk, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon truffle oil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped black truffle Kosher salt to taste

For the Pickled Vegetables:

  • 1 bag baby corn, about 20 pieces
  • 1 bag baby carrots, about 20 pieces
  • 1 cup cauliflower florets, about 1-inch in diameter
  • 1 tablespoon Mexican oregano
  • 2 jalapenos, sliced lengthwise
  • 1 cup white vinegar

For the Paella de Quinoa:

  • 2 cups uncooked quinoa
  • 3 cups pickled vegetables
  • 1 cup truffle aioli
  • 1 bunch asparagus, cut to 3-inch spears and blanched for 3 minutes
  • 1 cup hon-shimeji mushrooms, or other mushrooms

For the Truffle Aioli: In a bowl, combine the egg yolk and the mustard. Start to whisk the mixture, and slowly drizzle the oil into the bowl making sure each pour of oil is well incorporated into the mixture. Continue whisking until ingredients emulsify. Then, add the rest of the ingredients and whisk until the combination thickens into a mayonnaise-like sauce.

For the Pickled Vegetables: In a medium sized bowl combine all the vegetables, add the jalapenos, oregano, and vinegar; salt to taste. Let vegetables marinate in vinegar for 15 minutes.

For the Paella de Quinoa:

  • In a medium saucepan, bring water to a boil. Add the uncooked quinoa and salt to taste. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Allow to cool to room temperature; fluff with a fork. Add in the pico de gallo, and stir until ingredients are well mixed; salt to taste.
  • In a sauté pan over medium heat, combine the pickled vegetables, asparagus and mushrooms with oil. Sauté until vegetables are warm and thoroughly cooked, yet still crisp; salt to taste.

To Assemble and Serve: Place a generous portion of quinoa in each bowl, then place the sautéed vegetables on top. Drizzle the truffle aioli over it and garnish with upland crest.