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How to check quinoa for bugs? (USA)

 
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amother




OP
 

Post Wed, Jan 06 2021, 12:26 pm
Anyone have any idea how to check quinoa for bugs? I recently heard they could be infested... I’m in the USA and use the company ancient harvest, but I’m open to using any company upon recommendation... ty
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amother




Jetblack
 

Post Wed, Jan 06 2021, 12:28 pm
Pour quinoa into fine mesh strainer.
Shake strainer for 20-30 seconds over white dish/cloth/paper.
Examine paper for bugs.
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amother




OP
 

Post Wed, Jan 06 2021, 12:29 pm
Ty. Anyone know if there are any brands that do not need checking at all?
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Teomima




 
 
 
 

Post Wed, Jan 06 2021, 1:10 pm
I've never once found bugs in quinoa.
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Miri1




 
 
 
 

Post Wed, Jan 06 2021, 1:15 pm
Teomima wrote:
I've never once found bugs in quinoa.


This is a newer issue.
The same is recommended for brown rice.
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motherhood613




 
 
 
 

Post Thu, Feb 11 2021, 1:42 pm
according to star K....

1. Place quinoa (no more than 16oz at a time) in a strainer with holes small enough that it won’t fall through, ideally #15-25 size mesh.
2. Shake the quinoa over a white paper or lightbox for approx. 25-30 seconds
3. Check the surface of the paper or lightbox for insects. If any insects are found, the quinoa should not be used.

Warning: do not buy organic quinoa (this may be obvious to some, but I didn't realize that at first)! A few minutes into checking a small, beige bug (alive and well, unfortunately) made an appearance.

In some Jewish stores you can find pre-checked quinoa. The one I've seen comes in a vacuum sealed bag and is from Israel. Not sure the name, but pre-checked definitely exists.
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HakarasHatov




 
 
 
 

Post Thu, Feb 11 2021, 2:37 pm
Ancient Harvest with star k hechsher. Check with star k that it doesn’t need to be checked.
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FranticFrummie




 
 
 
 

Post Thu, Feb 11 2021, 2:41 pm
I always pre soak and rinse my quinoa anyway, to remove bitterness. Soak in warm water, and it will "wake up" any bugs that have been hiding in there. They'll float to the top and wiggle around. If infested, you have to toss out the whole package - there's no saving it.

I have never found infested quinoa, but I have found bugs in rice this way. Now I know not to buy rice until just before I'm ready to use it, and to store any uncooked rice in the freezer.
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Miri1




 
 
 
 

Post Thu, Feb 11 2021, 2:50 pm
Issue:
Some brands of quinoa were recently found to contain booklice. The Orthodox Union is looking into this matter. Accordingly, quinoa should not be used without a thorough inspection. The method of checking that has been found to be effective is to pour the quinoa into a thirty mesh sifter and agitate for 30 seconds over a white surface. If any booklice are found on the white surface, the quinoa should be discarded.

https://oukosher.org/kosher-al.....inoa/
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imorethanamother




 
 
 
 

Post Thu, Feb 11 2021, 2:59 pm
FranticFrummie wrote:
I always pre soak and rinse my quinoa anyway, to remove bitterness. Soak in warm water, and it will "wake up" any bugs that have been hiding in there. They'll float to the top and wiggle around. If infested, you have to toss out the whole package - there's no saving it.

I have never found infested quinoa, but I have found bugs in rice this way. Now I know not to buy rice until just before I'm ready to use it, and to store any uncooked rice in the freezer.


Is this the same way to check barley? I usually keep it in a sealed plastic container so I can tell if any grain moths are in there.

How would a freezer help? The bug is still there. It’s a myth that they “explode”.
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Miri1




 
 
 
 

Post Thu, Feb 11 2021, 3:03 pm
imorethanamother wrote:
Is this the same way to check barley? I usually keep it in a sealed plastic container so I can tell if any grain moths are in there.

How would a freezer help? The bug is still there. It’s a myth that they “explode”.


You need to be country specific.
I'm only knowledgeable of the US, where that would not be how you check quinoa.

For barley I soak in water, agitate a bit and see what floats up.

Quinoa needs to checked according to the OU statement above. (ie the sifting method)
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amother




Red
 

Post Thu, Feb 11 2021, 3:05 pm
imorethanamother wrote:
Is this the same way to check barley? I usually keep it in a sealed plastic container so I can tell if any grain moths are in there.

How would a freezer help? The bug is still there. It’s a myth that they “explode”.
\]

Storing rice in the freezer doesn't remove bugs, but it does prevent any existing eggs from hatching.
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FranticFrummie




 
 
 
 

Post Thu, Feb 11 2021, 3:05 pm
imorethanamother wrote:
Is this the same way to check barley? I usually keep it in a sealed plastic container so I can tell if any grain moths are in there.

How would a freezer help? The bug is still there. It’s a myth that they “explode”.


You can check any grain the same way.

Freezers can keep a CLEAN bag of grain from getting infested. Moths don't crawl into the freezer, but they will for sure get into your cabinets.

The trick is to put the clean bag of grain directly into the freezer right away. I had some rice that was in a cabinet, and when I got a new freezer I thought "I'll put the rice in here!"

A month later I went to get the rice out of the freezer, and when I soaked it, those darn worms were alive! They'd gotten in from the cabinet, survived very nicely in the freezer, and then woke up when they got in the water.

The water has to be just warm while soaking. If it's really hot, you'll cook the bugs, and then you won't be able to see them.
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Miri1




 
 
 
 

Post Thu, Feb 11 2021, 3:08 pm
FranticFrummie wrote:
You can check any grain the same way.

Freezers can keep a CLEAN bag of grain from getting infested. Moths don't crawl into the freezer, but they will for sure get into your cabinets.

The trick is to put the clean bag of grain directly into the freezer right away. I had some rice that was in a cabinet, and when I got a new freezer I thought "I'll put the rice in here!"

A month later I went to get the rice out of the freezer, and when I soaked it, those darn worms were alive! They'd gotten in from the cabinet, survived very nicely in the freezer, and then woke up when they got in the water.

The water has to be just warm while soaking. If it's really hot, you'll cook the bugs, and then you won't be able to see them.


I don't think that is the case.
With quinoa you are specifically looking for booklice, which will fall through the holes of the appropriate sized sieve.
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imorethanamother




 
 
 
 

Post Thu, Feb 11 2021, 3:39 pm
When I had grain moths I learned to put everything in heavy plastic containers with a solid lid. It prevents anything from getting in or out, and frees up freezer space.

Thanks for the info about barley everyone! I feel like rice in America isn’t infested - although I also keep them in containers.
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