Ever have a really strong, unexplainable craving? I mean, so strong a hankering that you will stop at nothing to satisfy it? That has been me lately with quinoa. The stuff has been on my mind for a couple weeks but I have not had the time to sit down to come up with something new and tasty…and good for the waistline, which has gotten out of hand since Easter. My yoga pants are becoming all too comfortable and I really begrudge getting out of my jammie bottoms to leave the house.
So today I decided it was time to rummage through the fridge and freezer to see what I could come up with…
A lemon, 2 remaining mushrooms, a couple green onions, about 1 1/2 cups of diced, multi-coloured bell peppers that I had squirreled away in the freezer, and some garlic on it’s last legs. I opened the pantry looking for the Quinoa and remembered that I had both white and red Quinoa on hand…hmmmm….why not use half of each? A great way to add some more colour to the dish and perk it up.
Please note ~ before you cook Quinoa, remember to rinse it well under cold running water to get rid of the saponin, it is a bitter tasting coating on Quinoa that renders it unpalatable. The plants produce the saponin to deter insects and birds from eating the Quinoa.
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups diced bell peppers (green or coloured)
2 cups sliced mushrooms
Sea salt & pepper to taste
2 Tbsp fresh parsley (or 1 Tbsp dried)
1/4 tsp each dried mint, oregano and basil
1 green onion, diced (green and white parts)
Juice from half a lemon
Cook 1/2 Cup Quinoa according to package instructions. While the Quinoa is cooking, saute the peppers and garlic in a tsp of Olive oil, then added the sliced mushrooms, sea salt, fresh ground black pepper and the dried herbs; cook over medium-low heat until the mushrooms are cooked through.
Remove from heat, add the cooked Quinoa, the fresh squeezed lemon juice, green onions and fresh parsley if using. Adjust seasonings to taste at this point.
Serve hot or cold. Makes 4 servings.
FYI – This salad makes an excellent filling for wraps for lunch on the go.
I do believe my hankering has been satisfied….for now…