I actually set out to make a bean and bacon soup. When I checked the pantry I didn't have any white beans but did have some aduki beans. Why would I have aduki beans, you might ask?
Quinoa cooks just like rice and can be used easily as a healthier substitute for rice or couscous.
Besides finding tasty Mexican recipes online, of which there are many, you can also borrow from Mexican techniques and ingredients to come up with recipes that are uniquely your own.
Quinoa is a common staple in South America- especially Peru. I then combined some flavors of Spain like olives and smoked paprika.
The final texture of the sauce is much finer and silkier than most stews.
Common ingredients are probably must-haves, the unique ones could be optional.