DEAR PEGGY: What do you think about quinoa? We've just heard about it and would like to try it.
—C.D., Yuma, Arizona
PEGGY: Quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah) is a great food to add to your menu. It is actually an herb seed related to spinach and chard, not a cereal grain like barley, oats and wheat. This gluten-free seed is easy to make and very nutritious. It cooks up fluffy with a slight crunch and has a nutty flavor. Nutritionally, quinoa is a more complete protein than most cereal grains because it contains all of the essential amino acids—the building blocks of protein that our bodies need. Quinoa is about 70% carbohydrate, 15% protein and 15% fat, with a significant amount of fiber, B vitamins, iron, zinc. phosphorous, and magnesium.