Thursday, May 12, 2011

Quinoa Makes Me Happy

I, recently, had a quinoa salad at a playdate that was so yummy, I decided to give it another go at home. Previously, quinoa didn't fly in our house. Maybe, because the first recipe I tried didn't mention rinsing the quinoa to wash away the bitter taste.
PLEASE READ CAREFULLY: You must wash quinoa before you cook it, or it will be extremely bitter and no one will want to eat it!
My first attempt, was a Southwest Quinoa Salad. Next up, I'm thinking Greek, or really any flavor combination you may like. Quinoa is a very versatile grain that could even be substituted for rice in a lot of dishes.

{Southwest Quinoa Salad}
adapted from this recipe
1/2 cups quinoa, rinsed well and drained
2 Tbsp lime juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 can (15 oz.) reduced-sodium black beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed, or drained canned corn
1/3 red bell pepper, chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons red onion, finely minced
salt & pepper, to taste
avocado, sliced or diced

Rinse quinoa well. Bring quinoa, 1 C of water and a pinch of salt to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 10-15 minutes, or until water is absorbed. While quinoa is cooking, mix together lime juice, oil and cumin. Whisk to combine. Add in slightly cooled quinoa and remaining ingredients. Stir to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning.

Serve with butter lettuce for wrapping, or in a bowl. Top each serving with fresh avocado.

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