Quinoa Tabouleh

Quinoa Tabouleh

Quinoa is a rare plant food in that it contains a complete protein without needing to be combined with another grain.  A great vegetarian meal option.  It’s also delicious in its own bland way.  I use it as a blank canvas, and prefer buying it organic.

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If I add it to stews or make it into a pilaf, my son doesn’t want to eat it because the individual grains look like little bugs with tails.  Though he’s sensitive to textures and the way his food appears, I do have to agree.  It isn’t pleasant to see those little critters floating around in my soup bowl like blow-up versions of microscopic organisms in a lab petri dish, now that he’s voiced this observation.  Ew.

I do like to eat cooked quinoa cold with juicy tomatoes, cucumbers, and fresh mint.  Substituting it for bulgar to make a toubleh is my favorite way to use quinoa.  I prefer to use lemon juice but don’t always have lemons on hand, whereas there is always a box of quinoa in my pantry for last minute tabouleh.  When I don’t have lemons I use apple cider vinegar to make my dressing.

Ingredients:

1 whole cucumber

2 whole Roma tomatoes

1/2 cup onion, leek, spring onion.  I alternate.

3 T lemon juice

1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil

Himalayan salt to taste

Freshly ground pepper to taste

2 cloves minced garlic

1/4 c. fresh mint chiffonade

1 c. quinoa

2 c. water

Method:

Add the quinoa to the 2 c. boiling water.  Cover and simmer for 7 minutes, or until the grains expand and grow to  look like protozoa.  😀

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Chill to cool completely.  I put mine in the freezer and stir frequently to speed the process.  And, yes, I have forgotten about it and ended up with a big bowl of quinoa sorbet.

Cut the cucumber and tomatoes to medium dice.  Mince the onions.  Combine in a large mixing bowl.

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Add the remaining ingredients and chill while the quinoa is cooling.

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Combine the dressing and vegetables with the quinoa and toss to mix well.

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Chill for several hours to allow the flavors to meld and the quinoa to soak up the wonderful dressing and vegetable juices.

Yield:  Makes 6-10 side dish servings or 2 to 3 main course portions.

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