First Fling with Quinoa – Quinoa Salad Recipe

imageWho hasn’t heard of Quinoa (pronounced kin-wah) over the last few years?

It seems to be the latest trend in healthy eating, even though it’s actually an ancient grain that’s been around for several centuries.

Well I recently decided to take the plunge and try this much-lauded food. I tried the red variety, though will definitely try the white and/or black at some stage.

Quinoa is actually a seed harvested from a small annual plant. It has a soft, but slightly chewy texture, similar to cooked rice, and a slightly nutty flavour. I really enjoyed it! It’s also very easy to prepare as a cooked food. However, it can also be sprouted for purely raw dishes.

My first foray was as a cooked meal, though I may attempt sprouting at some point. As usual though, when I have cooked food, I try to balance it out with raw items, in order to aid digestion, and retain that nutrient balance.

 

This is the main dish I made with the quinoa, though I had leftovers for lunch in various salads over the next few days. It seems to keep quite well in the fridge, so made for some very quick and easy meals – something I highly value!

This recipe makes more cooked quinoa than is required for the salad, so you can either reduce the amount you prepare, or enjoy left-overs like I did. It also has an avocado dressing similar to the one in my Kelp Noodle Salad recipe. However, this time I used lime juice rather than lemon juice, and I found it had a better flavour.

image

RFD Original Recipe – Serves 2

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon vegan stock powder
  • 3-4 cos lettuce leaves
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 baby carrot
  • 60g goat’s feta
  • Good handful of mixed sprouts – alfalfa, chickpea, lentil, mung bean
  • 1 avocado
  • Juice of ½ a lime
  • 1 clove garlic
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds

 

Method

  • Rinse quinoa well – very important, as the seeds have a saponin coating, which is very unpalatable
  • Add quinoa, water and stock powder to the rice cooker and set on a standard cycle
  • Cool cooked quinoa in the fridge
  • Slice lettuce into strips and place in the bottom of your bowls
  • Top with ½ cup of the cooked quinoa in each bowl
  • Spread the mixed sprouts over the top
  • Dice the tomato and feta and scatter over the quinoa
  • Julienne the carrot and sprinkle over the salads
  • Mash the avocado flesh in a separate bowl. Mix in the lime juice and minced garlic. Season with salt and pepper to taste
  • Top the salad with the avocado dressing
  • Sprinkle the sunflower seeds over the top
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