Quinoa Salad




Quinoa Ingredients

1 cup - Dried Tri-color Quinoa
2 cups - water
1/4 tsp - Kosher Salt

Mediterranean Vinaigrette

2 cloves - fresh peeled garlic
1 sprig - fresh rosemary leaves
1/2 bunch - fresh parsley
1/2 bunch- fresh oregano
1.5 lemons- zest/juice of a lemon
1/4 cup - white vinegar
1 tbsp - whole grain mustard
1 1/4 cup - extra virgin olive oil
to taste - kosher salt
optional - Honey


2-3/plate - sliced vine ripe tomato
5-6/plate - slice cucumbers
1/8 cup - sliced diced bell peppers
1/8 cup - small diced zucchini
8 oz. feta cheese


Preparing the Quinoa

Bring the water to a boil in a heavy 4 quart pot. Add the kosher salt then stir in the dried quinoa. Bring the pot back to a slow boil and cook until the quinoa just starts to split open and is tender, about 20 minutes. Drain the quinoa through a fine mesh strainer and spread out in a shallow pan. Place cooked quinoa in the refrigerator until cool, approximately 1 hour.

Preparing the Mediterranean Vinaigrette

Place all the ingredients except the olive oil, salt, and honey in a blender. Start blending on a medium high speed while slowly drizzling in the 1 1/4 cup of olive oil. Once the olive oil is fully incorporated taste the dressing. Add salt as needed. If the dressing tastes a bit bitter, blend in a small amount of honey. If it is too tart or too loose, blend in a small amount more olive oil

Finishing the Salad

Place the cooled quinoa in a mixing bowl and drizzle with 2 or 3 ounces of the vinaigrette. Add the diced bell peppers and zucchini to the bowl then mix well to incorporate. The mixed salad should be able to hold its shape if formed into a ball in your hand. If it crumbled apart easily, fold in a bit more dressing.

Lay out 4 to 6 plates on a flat surface. Arrange 2 to 3 sliced tomatoes around each plate, followed by the sliced cucumbers. Fill the center of the plate with approximatley 6 oz mixed quinoa, either loosely molded in a small upturned bowl or ring mold. Drizzle the top of the salad with 2 more ounces of vinaigrette and top with 1.5 to 2 oz of crumbled feta cheese.

Great additions to this salad include poached shrimp, lemon pepper roasted chicken, chilled crab and a host of other lightly prepared ingredients.

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