Monday, September 21, 2015

"Green" Quinoa Salad

Here it is, courtesy of Food Network's Katie Lee:

Green Grape and Avocado Quinoa Salad

This recipe is sponsored by our recent trip to Peru, which is, along with Bolivia, the top world producer of quinoa (pronounced keen wah) ~ a non-grain psuedocereal.  (See the post: "The Beauty of Quinoa).  We ate quinoa in some form or fashion at most every meal ~ as a side dish, in soups and salads ~ it's everywhere. And with good reason, superfood-ish as it is.  High in protein, low in carbs, high in B vitamins and iron and fiber.  All this and it tastes good, too.   Wow, that's one amazing superfood!

When I came home and saw this on the cooking channel, I had to give it a try.  It's now a family favorite.

Start with the dressing ~ 
Whisk together in large bowl:
Zest and juice of 1 lime
3 T. extra virgin olive oil
Season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

Then add:
4 C. cooked quinoa, cooled (about 2 C. raw)
2 C. green grapes, halved
1 1/2 C. diced cucumbers
1/2 C. fresh mint, roughly chopped (don't skimp here -- It must be fresh!)
1/2 C. fresh parsley, roughly chopped (I use cilantro instead)
4 scallions, white and light green parts, sliced
1 avocado, diced

Mix together ever-so-gently.  Serve chilled or at room temperature.

My notes:

  • This is a good way to use "left-over" quinoa, if you're cooking a batch for dinner, just make some extra to use for this salad the next day.

  • I prefer fresh cilantro instead of parsley.

  • Also, I use a light dressing like this instead of the lime juice vinaigrette that's called for, which is just a bit too bitter for us.

It was a light delicious side dish with grilled salmon ~  

But remember, the real beauty of quinoa is that it's a complete protein all on it's own.  So this salad makes a great summer meal with some of your garden veggie bounty, like thickly sliced beefy (pun intended) tomatoes; or grilled zuchinni; or grilled corn on the cob; or.......wait.  I'm makin' myself hungry here......

As always, from my travel kitchen to yours, 

Bon appetit!


  1. Grapes and cucumbers? That sounds like an interesting combo. I love Quinoa though, so like trying it many ways.

    1. I grant you, Judy, it's very unique. But if you love quinoa, I would be surprised if you didn't like this. It's really the mint with the cukes that make it pop. The grapes sort of lighten the whole thing up, give it some sweetness. The avocado's, well. That just puts it over the top. Let me know how you like it!

  2. What a fun meal! I can't wait to try it and the combination sounds like it would really be a fun one!

    1. I think you'll like it. I've used it a lot this summer, just because it's so different. A very nice change of pace as a side dish. Or a nutrient-rich main dish, with veggies (from your garden boxes!) on the side.


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