I recently got hooked on a quinoa salad at a restaurant in my office building. After spending $4.00 on it a few times a week, I decided to recreate the salad at home. It made enough for my lunch all week AND THEN SOME! It is a healthy, refreshing and delicious alternative to sandwiches or lettuce-based salads. Doug even enjoyed it for lunch on Sunday and said it was excellent! Are you hosting or going to a summer barbeque sometime soon? This would make a perfect side dish and would accommodate any dietary needs for your vegetarian or gluten-free friends!
Vegetable and Quinoa Summer Salad
Yield: 8 Servings
2 C. Dry Quinoa
4 C. Water
3 Bell Peppers (I used red, yellow and green), diced
1 Pint Baby Tomatoes (I used heirloom baby tomatoes), halved
1 Jalapeno, finely minced
1/4 C. Fresh Cilantro, roughly chopped
1/3 C. Pure Extra Virgin Olive Oil
3 Limes, juiced
Salt and Pepper, to taste
Red Pepper Flakes (for heat!), to taste
1/2 C. Soy Nuts (as a garnish)
In a medium pot, combine the quinoa and water; bring to a hard boil. Stir and turn heat to low; cover with a lid and simmer for 15 minutes (or until water is absorbed). Meanwhile, prep the peppers, tomatoes, jalapeno and cilantro. In a large bowl, combine the olive oil, lime juice, salt and pepper. Add the vegetables to the bowl; toss well. Finally, add the cooked quinoa to the bowl, strirring gently. Add more salt, pepper, olive oil or lime juice, as needed. Before serving, add soy nuts and red pepper flakes. (I found that the soy nuts got a little soggy overnight in the refrigerator, so add a sprinkle of those just before serving). Serve as is or on a bed of leafy greens.