Monday, October 4, 2010

Quinoa Salad-Last taste of summer

The temperature dipped into the 30s a few times this week, and while I am not exactly sad to see summer go, it does mean saying goodbye to a few of my favorite things. The good fruit is gone, replaced by the inedible, and the tomatoes are soon to follow. This was my favorite new concoction that made good use of the abundance of sweet summer cherry tomatoes. And if you've never tried quinoa, give it a whirl. It is really tasty and healthy in ways that most grains aren't.

Quinoa Salad
Prepare quinoa according to package directions, usually 2:1 H20:quinoa ratio. Using chicken or vegetable stock is nice in place of the H20. Cool.

Chop any or all of the following: scallions, cucumber, bell pepper, celery, cherry tomato (halved), and fresh cilantro. Mix well and sprinkle with sea salt and pepper. Letting this ‘rest’ for 10-15 minutes allows the juices of the vegetables to be drawn out of the flesh, which makes a nice base for the dressing. Drizzle with olive oil and your favorite vinegar; white wine or white balsamic is especially nice but any will do. Add a can of drained, rinsed chick peas. Combine with quinoa and add feta cheese prior to serving. A day in the fridge does a lot for the flavor of this dish.

If you need to feel fancy and pretentious (as if eating something called ‘quinoa’ wasn’t enough) adding olives or artichokes is also very good.