Doing so means you are getting a good variety of nutrients to help your body be strong and healthy. Eating more plant-based meals has been proven to lower your weight, cholesterol, and blood pressure. Pick fruit and vegetables that are the colors of the rainbow and you can’t go wrong plus your dish will look darn pretty! Quinoa (keen-wa) is a staple in my pantry. If I’m not sure what to make for dinner, I often cook it and toss it in with other vegetables and herbs. It’s so versatile and because it’s a seed, not a grain, it’s a good choice for those who are gluten intolerant. Use quinoa where you would rice. This quinoa salad is loaded with flavor and texture. For more ideas on how to use quinoa, chick here for 8 recipes from my site.
adapted by The Kitchn
1 cup quinoa
1 3/4 cups chicken broth
8 small red radishes, chopped
1/3 English cucumber, peeled and chopped
1 shallot, minced
1 avocado, roughly chopped
chopped fresh dill – about 1/2 cup
zest of 1 lemon and 1 1/2 tablespoons of juice
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup pitted dates, roughly chopped
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Rinse the quinoa for a couple of minutes in a fine mesh strainer. Drain. Heat a saucepan over medium-high heat and add a drizzle of olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the quinoa and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Pour in broth, bring to a boil, cover, and turn the heat down to low. Cook for 15 minutes. Turn off heat and let sit, covered, for 5 minutes.
2. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the cooked quinoa over it in an even layer. Let cool.
3. Toss radish, cucumber, shallot and dill with the quinoa in a large bowl. Add lemon zest. In a small bowl whisk the juice together with the olive oil, and balsamic vinegar until emulsified. Toss this with the quinoa.
4. Fold in chopped dates, avocado, and Parmesan. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
The Culinary Chase’s Note: I served this while the quinoa was still warm. As always, the flavor gets more pronounced the following day. This makes a perfect dish for a pot luck dinner or as a side to a main meal. Enjoy!