Monday, July 26, 2010

Quinoa Salad with Berries, Nuts and Greens

This recipe is a little more complex than most of the recipes I plan to post on this site, but if the rave reviews it received from every single person who tried it tell you anything, I think it's worth it! I used a whole box of quinoa so it makes a ton - feel free to cut it in half if you don't think you'll use all 8 servings in one week.

Bonus: this recipe is crazy healthy, especially for how delicious it is! Quinoa (keen-waa) is a whole grain with lots of fiber and protein, and you already knew that nuts and leafy greens are super good for you. Depending on how much olive oil you add, it's also fairly low fat, plus it's vegan and gluten free!

Grocery list
  • Quinoa - 1 box (16 oz.)
  • Vegetable stock - 1 box
  • Fresh currents OR pomegranate seeds OR dried sweetened cranberries - 1 cup
  • Kale OR other dark greens (collards, spinach) - 1 medium bunch
  • Walnuts OR other nut - 1 cup, chopped
  • Onion OR shallots - 1/2 to one cup, chopped
  • Olive oil OR butter - 1 to 2 tbsp.
  • Salt - 1 tsp. or to taste

Cook the quinoa according to the directions on the box, substituting vegetable stock for water (add a few cups of water if you need need more liquid.)

Chop the greens and their stems into fork-sized pieces. Blanch them in boiling water, making sure to add the stems about 2 minutes before the leaves. Cook the leaves and stems together for about 5 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Sautee the onions or shallots along in olive oil until softened and slightly caramelized.

Optional: toast the walnuts in a dry pan 2-3 minutes. Be careful not to burn them!

When the quinoa is cooked, salt to taste. Toss in the rest of the ingredients: greens, berries, nuts, onions. Top with more olive oil if desired. Store in a large container in the refrigerator for up to one week, or immediately split into individual lunch containers. Serve either cold or heated.

Yield: 8 one to two cup servings
To bring: transport container (microwave safe if heating)

Questions about the cooking method? Please let me know in the comments!

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