Let’s lighten up a little today. Deep concerns over recent current events have me feeling heavy and weighed down. Perhaps today would be appropriate for a lighter topic. Actually, it’s a lot lighter – a summer recipe with quinoa. Have you tried it?
Quinoa has become one of my favorite foods. I stumbled on this salad recipe last year and it is one of my favorites, especially on a hot summer day. Quinoa, pronounced “keen-wah” is a grain that is becoming increasingly popular. Even the Pope will receive a quinoa communion wafer during his visit to Bolivia this week! The National Restaurant Association has named quinoa as a hot trend in side dishes among chefs. Quinoa is gluten free, full of fiber, rich in iron and vitamin B, and has a nutty flavor.
The Whole Grains Council states, “It’s not surprising that quinoa supports good health, as it’s one of the only plant foods that’s a complete protein, offering all the essential amino acids in a healthy balance.” Referred to as the “mother grain” and as a “super food” quinoa is available in white, red and black. Quinoa flakes and flour are available, usually at health food stores.
- Bring to a boil over low heat:
- 1 cup quinoa
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 1/2 cups water
- Cover and simmer slowly for 15 to 20 minutes until the grains are cooked but still firm. Remove from heat and add:
- 2 diced tomatoes
- 1 cup diced bell peppers
- 1 cup diced cucumber
- 1 cup chopped kalamata olives
- 1/4 cup chopped green onion
Toss everything together and add Lemon Oregano Dressing.
Lemon Oregano Dressing
Whisk together well:
- 1/4 cup EVOO
- 2 tbsp honey
- juice and finely minced zest of one lemon
- 1 tbsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
This dish is fresh, healthy and filling. The combinations are endless. Give it a try!