Friday, April 29, 2011

Roasted Quinoa Salad with Balsamic Dressing

What You'll Need:
1 c. quinoa, rinsed
2 c. low-sodium vegetable broth (msg-free is always good too)
1/4 c. red bell pepper, diced (approximately 1/2 of a medium sized pepper)
1/4 c. celery, diced (approximately 1/2 of a stalk)
1/4 c. red onion, diced (approximately 1/4 of a small onion)
1/4 c. black beans
1 1/2 Tbs. cilantro, minced
1 Tbs. green onion, chopped
1 Tbs. crushed black olives
2 large cloves of garlic, minced (approximately 1 Tbs)
1/8 c balsamic vinegar
2 tsp olive oil
dash of coriander powder
dash of cumin powder

What To Do:
In a dry frying pan, roast the rinsed quinoa over high heat (stirring frequently) for 3-4 minutes.  Add in the 2 cups of vegetable broth and bring to a boil.  Once the quinoa boils, reduce the heat and simmer (medium) for approximately 20 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed and the grains are soft and sprouted (spiraled).  Once cooked, remove from pan and place in a medium to large-sized bowl to cool slightly.

In a frying pan (you can use the same one if you want), heat 1 tsp of olive oil over medium-high heat.  Saute the fresh minced garlic for about 1 minute, or just until it begins to turn golden.  Add diced onion and continue to saute for an additional 1-2 minutes. After a couple of minutes, add in the diced celery and saute for another 1-2 minutes. Remove sauteed mixture from heat and place in the same bowl as the quinoa.

Add in the bell pepper, green onion, cilantro, olives and black beans; toss well.

In a separate bowl, combine the balsamic vinegar, 1 tsp olive oil, coriander powder and cumin powder; whisk all together with a fork.  Pour over the quinoa mixture and toss well.

It tastes best when served chilled!

*You can add diced chicken to this as well to make it more filling - I haven't tried it yet, but I think a light honey-glazed, grilled and diced chicken breast might taste good

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