25 June 2009

Italian Style Quinoa Salad

We've had a warm spell punctuated by a few surprisingly cool days here and there, but the heat makes me crave salads in a big way. I have finally found a way to prepare quinoa, so that my "marito' likes it. Warm savory quinoa, just didn't put put a twinkle in his eye; more like forced feeding and that's no fun. When I made this recently for myself, while he was gone for the day, I discovered later that I had a hard time getting him to share the last of it with me.
This months' theme for the "Heart of the Matter- Eating for Life", is the best of the bounty of June's produce, so with tiny fresh peas and green beans are all over the market at the moment, I knew they needed to be included. My balcony is filling up with my prolific herb containers, not to mention all of the herbs in my little herb patch over by the chickens, so they are a natural component as well. We still are getting some wonderful small tomatoes from Sardinia, but the local "Cuore di Bui", tomatoes, number one choice around here, are starting to make an appearance. If you can find small sweet tomatoes or tart and tangy cherry tomatoes all the better, but just as wonderful with the best tomatoes you can find.
It's a simple interpretation which comes together quickly, reminiscent of the classic middle eastern dish, tabbouleh and sure to satisfy on a hot summers eve.
I'm sending this over to Ilva of Lucullian Delights for HOTM #27 Best of June Produce. You can find out all about this event and many more heart healthy recipes here and a lot of interesting blogs on the round ups as well.

Quinoa Salad
Serves 2

½ c quinoa dry cooked in veggie stock, takes about 15 minutes
green beans, cooked, chopped into 1/2 inch lengths
peas, fresh
2-3 roasted garlic
Tomatoes, tiny cherry
1 T mint, 2 stalks, leaves plucked and chopped or basil if you aren't fond of mint
1 small stalk celery and leaves, chopped
1 T parsley, flat leaf
1 T chives, snipped smal
1 lemon, juiced
2- 4 T olive oil
Salt, good quality, I used pink Himalayan

Cook your quinoa in veggie stock for added flavor.
Lightly cook your green beans and peas separately till al dente. I had leftover pencil thin green beans that were a great addition.
While they are cooking, gather and chop all of your herbs.
Juice your lemon into a metal or heat resistant bowl large enough to hold everything.
Toss all your herbs and roasted garlic in.
Add your cooked quinoa, and cooked and drained vegetables while warm and stir to mix. Adding the ingredients warm helps the quinoa absorb the flavors.
Add the oil and season with salt and pepper. Adjust to taste.
Once it has cooled down add your tomatoes.
It's ready to serve now or will hold well over night.
Bring to room temperature or at least to take the chill off.
Adjust seasonings before serving.

Cook's notes
The measurements or approximations and are easily double.
I wished I had made more when I made it as it disappeared quickly.
Delicious as is or on top of a bed of greens.


Mary and Sean said...

looks lovely and fresh, perfect for our hot summer days in Japan.

Proud Italian Cook said...

Hi Marla, I don't make quinoa enough and I don't know why? Its good for you and it has alot of protein! This is a salad I could eat as a meal! Hope you're enjoying your summer in that beautiful area you live in!
xox, Marie

Ilva said...

what a perfect summer meal Marla! Thank you!

Bella Baita Marla said...

Thank you all for your lovely comments!

Ivy said...

What a perfect salad and with all those fresh vegetables and herbs with your garden, it makes it even more delicious.

Murasaki Shikibu said...

I'm still studying how to cook quinoa so thanks for coming up with this wonderful recipe. I love it. :)

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