Quinoa Salad

What's for Dinner?

Some nights it is impossible to think of a good, healthy dinner for two that doesn't involve a trip to the store for extra ingredients. Β So, tonight's menu will be a combination of "clean out the fridge night" and "look what's been hiding in the pantry night"....delish!

Quinoa Salad with Roasted Peppers and Roma Tomatoes (adapted from Food and Wine magazine)

* with a side of sauteed chicken breasts seasoned with Adobo (my secret magic ingredient) and olive oil!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • 1 large red bell pepper
  • 1 large yellow bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 medium cucumberβ€”peeled, halved, seeded and finely diced

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a medium saucepan, heat the 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the quinoa and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until lightly browned, about 4 minutes. Add the water and a generous pinch of salt and bring to a boil. Cover and cook over low heat until the liquid is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Fluff the quinoa with a fork and spread on a baking sheet to cool.
  2. Meanwhile, roast the red and yellow peppers directly over a gas flame or under the broiler, turning occasionally, until charred all over. Transfer the peppers to a bowl, cover and let steam for 10 minutes. Peel and seed them and cut into 1/4-inch dice.
  3. In a medium skillet, toast the pine nuts over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until golden and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Transfer the pine nuts to a plate to cool.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk the remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil with the vinegar. Add the quinoa, peppers, pine nuts, cucumber, tomato, basil and/0r mint and toss well, breaking up any lumps of quinoa.
  5. Season the salad with salt and pepper and serve.

 

Keen-WHAT? (Quinoa)

So, I am trying out something new in the kitchen, Quinoa. Β It has been all over the place recently (magazines, NYtimes, cooking shows, on menus at "normal" restaurants), yet we have not really had a chance to get to know one another. Β It's about time!

Breakfast Quinoa:

Cook Quinoa according to package instructions and then sprinkle with your favorite toppings.

Some ideas: craisins, raisins, dried fruit, toasted almonds or other nuts, honey, greek yogurt, cinnamon sugar

(note: just ate this sprinkled with cinnamon sugar, it was delish...and delightfully less slimy than oatmeal)

Dinner Quinoa:

Corn, Edamame and Quinoa Salad (courtesy of the NY times)

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/14/health/nutrition/14recipehealth.html?_r=2&ref=health

Dinner at our house tonight:

Thai vegetables (Yellow Curry sauce from Trader Joe's combined and slow cooked with zucchini, red potatoes, carrots, garbanzo beans and onions) with.....you guessed it!...QUINOA!

If you have more ideas or great recipes involving this South American Super Grain, let me know by leaving a comment on this page.

Thanks and Happy Tuesday,

M

additional reading - Quinoa craze:

http://articles.sfgate.com/2009-04-19/food/17194715_1_quinoa-bob-s-red-mill-grains