quinoa salad – fuel for hours

All my life, I’ve been ‘that skinny @#*XX’ that never gained weight. I could eat like a horse, which I did with great joy, and never gained an ounce. Then I hit forty. And slowly, ever so unnoticeably, each year I was just a little bit not as skinny…

I’m not exactly a two ton Tess but my clothes are no longer roomy. I’m being silly but truth be told I feel better when I take up less room. I’ve decided to come up with some new lunches that will give me the energy I need to get through my work day without all the delicious fat. What can I say – I love mayonnaise, cheese, fries – lunch stuff…

My first attempt with quinoa was last summer. We loved it stuffed in a pita pocket but today I want less carbs so I nixed the bread and served the salad straight on a plate. It was delicious but I wondered if it would carry me through a work shift. Happily, I can report that I lasted eight hours. You can’t ask for more than that!

Quinoa Salad

Serves 4

1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 cup water

Mix ingredients together in a medium-sized sauce pan then bring to a boil
Cover pot and reduce heat to minimum for 15 minutes
Remove pot from heat and allow to stand for 5 minutes – leave cover on pot
Fluff quinoa with a fork and allow to cool

Meanwhile

1 ½ cups heirloom cherry tomatoes, halved
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and diced
½ fennel bulb, sliced thin
¼ red onion, sliced thin
2 tablespoons pine nuts, lightly toasted in a skillet
8 large fresh basil leaves, sliced in strips

Dressing

In a mason jar combine:

½ teaspoon sea salt
1 clove of garlic, pressed through garlic press
½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

Shake well

Place quinoa, veggies, nuts in a large bowl. Pour dressing over all and toss well.

Serve immediately or cover and chill until needed – 1 day

THE LOVE: You can easily play around with this recipe. Use whatever combination of raw vegetables that you like and experiment with your choice of herb. Just make sure that everything is really fresh!

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one year ago: jumbo shrimp with shaved fennel in spicy tomato cream

Thanks for reading.

  • Judith

    OOOOH! You’ll be pleased to know that I made (yes, that isn’t a typo – I made…) a Quinoa salad yesterday and loved it! No animal products – so great in my new journey of becoming a Vegan. I will use your recipe next time! xo

  • Patti Flecknell

    ahhhh Thank you for this Michelle, I have been making your Beer Bread and the Meyer Lemon Cake they are big hits with everyone but like you I have a wedding getting closer and looking to “take up less room” before it gets here. Thanks again for sharing. Take care Patti

  • Eight hours is pretty phenomenal, I’m usually craving carbs or sugar in that length of time! I love quinoa and know I would really enjoy this salad! It’s so colorful and healthy!! xx

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