Keen on Quinoa

Quinoa is one of the most nutritious super foods, a great addition to any satisfactory salad.

Quinoa salad with edamame (photo credit: Courtesy)
Quinoa salad with edamame
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Quinoa is a fantastic side dish for a meal, a Shabbat lunch, or a great lunch any time. It’s packed with protein and is a berry, not a grain, as many people presume. Some people eat it on Passover and it has become a new super food because of all the nutrients it provides in a single serving. 
I love these salads because they combine crunchy and nutty flavored quinoa with fresh vegetables and herbs.  Every bite is filled with flavor and they are very filling.  I like to serve them in a white serving piece so that all the colors and textures of the salads are highlighted. 
Quinoa Salad with Edamame
Serves 6 – 8
1 cup quinoa, rinsed well

1 package frozen shelled edamame

1/2 cup pinenuts, toasted

1 red and 1 yellow pepper, diced

1 red onion diced

1/2 cup dried cranberries


1/2 cup olive oil

1/4 cup white wine vinegar

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

2-3 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon
Kosher salt
pepper to taste
Cook quinoa in 2 cups of boiling water for 13-15 minutes. Cook edamame in 6 cups of boiling slightly salted water for 5-6 minutes. Drain and set aside.
For the dressing: Whisk together all ingredients.
To assemble: In a bowl mix quinoa, edamame, pine nuts, peppers, onions and dried cranberries. Pour in dressing. Toss and serve at room temperature.
Quinoa Salad with Cucumbers, Orange Zest, and Raisins
Serves 8
2 cups quinoa
2 1/2 cups chicken broth or vegetable stock
4 scallions, light and white green part only, thinly sliced
1/2 cup chopped raisins
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 cucumber, peeled, halved, seeded and chopped
1/2 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
Freshly ground black pepper
Place the quinoa in a fine-mesh sieve and rinse under cold water until the water runs clear. Bring the chicken stock to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the quinoa and return to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer the quinoa until it has expanded fully, about 20 to 25 minutes. Uncover, fluff with a fork and set aside to cool.
Place the cooled quinoa in a large bowl. Add the scallions, raisins, rice vinegar, orange juice and zest, Dijon mustard, olive oil, cumin, cucumber and parsley and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold, then serve.
Southwestern Quinoa Salad with Black Beans and Corn

Serves 6 - 8
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
3/4 cup uncooked quinoa
1 1/2 cups vegetable broth or parve chicken broth
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper or ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 cup corn kernels
1 (450g) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Kosher salt and pepper to taste
Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the onion and garlic, and sauté until lightly browned.
Mix quinoa into the saucepan and cover with vegetable broth. Season with cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper. Bring the mixture to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes,
Stir corn into the saucepan, and continue to simmer about 5 minutes until heated through. Mix in the black beans and cilantro.

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