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Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Toasted Quinoa Salad

 

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I brought my Toasted Quinoa Salad to a graduation celebration and it was a hit! Something as simple as a salad, using a few fresh ingredients had friends asking me for this recipe. I knew I needed to post this recipe ASAP!

Sweet Basil (2)

Lemons

English Cucumbers

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Orange Bell Peppers

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Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 to 20 minutes (add 5 minutes cooking time if you’re toasting the quinoa)
Total Time: 25 minutes
Yields: 4 to 6 servings
Equipment: 3-quart saucepot with a tight-fitting glass lid, mesh sieve, whisk, serving bowl

Ingredients:
1 12-ounce package (equivalent to 1 1/2 cups of uncooked quinoa)
3 cups of unsalted vegetable stock, HOT (substitute water or unsalted chicken broth)
1 tablespoon of Kosher salt
1/2 red onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 orange bell pepper, diced
2 cups of feta cheese, diced
1 1/2 pints of grape tomatoes, halved
2 cups of a hothouse (English) cucumber, diced
1/4 cup of fresh basil, Chiffonade style
2 tablespoon of finely chopped fresh Italian Parsley (dried 1 tablespoon)
zest of 1 lemon
1 lemon juiced
1 1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
*E.V.O.O.

Directions For Toasting And Cooking Quinoa:
Start by rinsing the quinoa in a fine-mesh sieve.

Directions:
If you’ve never made quinoa, it’s really easy. First, you always want to do a quick rinse of the quinoa first. The outer coating is called saponin and it’s bitter. Place quinoa in a fine-mesh sieve and rinse under cold water for a few seconds.

In a large heavy bottom 3-quart saucepot on medium-low heat add (or leave) some water to the quinoa so that it’s moist, add the quinoa to the heated pan. Make sure not to overcrowd. using a whisk, quickly stir the quinoa around in the pan as it begins to toast.

Once the water is absorbed and the quinoa begins to pop, you’ll know it’s drying out. Continue whisking until the grains of quinoa begin to brown. The aroma will begin to smell nutty, around 5 minutes.

In another pot bring the 3 cups of vegetable stock up to a boil and salt. Pour the hot vegetable stock into the pot containing the quinoa. Give the quinoa a good stir, cover (with the glass lid). With the heat still on medium-low, simmer until all the water is absorbed, 15 to 20 minutes. Set aside off the heat for 5 minutes, uncover and fluff with a fork.

While the quinoa is cooking (during the 15 to 20 minutes) dice the vegetables and feta, zest, and juice a lemon. Place all the ingredients into a large bowl. Add in the cooled cooked toasted quinoa, season with salt and pepper. Finish by adding in the chopped basil and parsley and toss. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.

Before serving my Toasted Quinoa Salad, I like to add a drizzle of really good *E.V.O.O.

*E.V.O.O. is extra virgin olive oil.

 

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Watermelon And Feta Salad With A Lemon Vinaigrette

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Watermelon And Feta Skewers

This Watermelon And Feta Salad is so delicious and refreshing. Salty and sweet, a match made in heaven.

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One of my favorite gadgets is the salad spinner. Great for after washing and drying your greens really well. This will allow the dressing to adhere to the leaves.

Watermelon And Feta Skewers

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Equipment: Salad spinner, wooden skewers

Ingredients:
1 seedless watermelon,  rind removed and cut into 1-inch cubes
1 12-ounce package really good Feta
1 cup (4 ounces) fresh mint leaves, julienned (optional)
6 cups of baby arugula, washed and spun dry

Lemon Vinaigrette:
2 lemons juiced (1/4 cup)
1/2 cup e.v.o.o.
1 teaspoon Agave nectar
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper

Directions:
In a small bowl, add lemon juice, Agave nectar, Kosher salt, and freshly cracked black pepper. Whisk all that together while slowly drizzling in *E.V.O.O.

Spoon the dressing over the Watermelon And Feta Salad. So simple right? Try this salad the next time you’re looking to try something a little different, I’m sure you’ll love it.

How about Watermelon And Feta Salad Skewers?
Alternate the ingredients, watermelon, feta, mint leaves (optional), and arugula onto a skewer. Drizzle with the Lemon Vinaigrette.

*E.V.O.O.: is Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

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Mediterranean Chickpea Salad

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Adding chic peas to your salad adds protein and texture. Lots of colorful ingredients and different textures make for a wonderful salad.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients:
1 hothouse cucumber, (English cucumber) 1 1/2 inch dice
1-pint grape tomatoes halved
2-15 ounce cans chickpeas,  drained and rinsed
1/2 red onion, 1/2 inch dice
1/2 cup diced feta
1/2 cup Kalamata olives (optional)
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon Freshly cracked black pepper

Directions:
In a large mixing bowl, add all the ingredients above. Season with Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper, and toss.  Dress with a lemon vinaigrette.

Homemade Vinaigrette Recipes- Lemon, Balsamic, And Cilantro Lime

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