We served this quinoa as a pre-game power snack for our gluten-free event this past weekend with the San Diego Padres and Colorado Rockies. We received rave reviews and everyone asked for our recipe, so we're happy to share this Hip, Simple, Fabulous™ dish with you! Healthy, flavorful and versatile this gluten-free dish is sure to be a winner, whether it's a festive side dish for your next party, potluck or picnic or a satisfying vegetarian meal at home.
This quinoa will quickly become a staple in your own home. Crisp, fresh, summer flavors combine with a hint of citrus to make this a sophisticated yet simple dish.
INGREDIENTS WITH FLAVOR AND PURPOSE
As a health coach I am passionate about enjoying delicious, satisfying food with PURPOSE! Trade up your rice or potatoes for this nutrient rich side dish! Here are just a few of the MANY healthy reasons to make this SMALL change.
Why Quinoa? Quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) is an ancient food once known as the “Gold of the Incas.” Quinoa offers a subtle, slightly nutty base for dishes somewhat similar to rice.
Not only delicious, quinoa provides a complete protein and contains magnesium which helps to relax muscles and blood vessels and may prevent or reduce migraines. The super-grain quinoa, actually a seed related to spinach, is loaded with protein - approximately 4 grams per 1/2 cup serving. Quinoa is also a safe alternative for those on a candida cleanse.
Most of the highly beneficial phyto-nutrients and flavonoids in oranges are found in the peel and inner white pulp of the orange. Together with a high concentration of vitamin C, the zest of the orange adds amazing flavor while boosting immunity, lowering blood pressure and cholesterol.
Even our humblest ingredients, zucchini and parsley, contribute their own host of health benefits -
Zucchini provides ﬁber, which aids in digestion, Vitamins C and A which serve as effective anti-inflammatory agents, and manganese which assists collagen production and encourages healthy vibrant skin.
Parsley brings an antioxidant arsenal that includes luteolin, Vitamins A and C, and Vitamin K, which reduce inﬂammation, improve collagen production, boost the immune system and strengthen bones, among many other benefits.
Packed with fabulous fresh veggies, time and again I hear that this dish pleases even the pickiest of eaters. At our event this weekend we received so many comments about our quinoa.
Here's a sample of what you had to say:
"I know it's quinoa but I actually LIKE this!"
"Wow, and this is healthy?"
"You like it? You never liked quinoa before!"
"It's got a lot of vegetables in it but it sure does taste good!"
"Now that's delicious food that truly fuels your body!"
I hope you enjoy sharing this dish as much as I do. Stop back by and let me know. And feel free to share my recipe using this perma link.
EAT INSPIRED TODAY TIPS
Make this dish the day before and refrigerate, covered, as the flavors are just as delicious the next day.
A rice cooker is a great, time-saving way to perfectly cook almost every grain. I like to cook a larger-than-needed amount and then refrigerate for use throughout the week. This is especially great for quinoa, which is delicious served hot or cold.
Include the family! This recipe offers a perfect opportunity for age-appropriate cooking with kids – from selecting and washing ingredients to measuring and mixing. Adults can chop ahead of time and allow the kids to assemble the ingredients. Supervision is always recommended.
Remember to take advantage of what’s local and in season in your area! This dish is extremely versatile and as long as you keep the proportions about the same, in a pinch you can swap out whichever fresh, local vegetables you have on hand.
CELEBRATE SUMMER QUINOA
1 Cup Dry Quinoa, Cooked (Makes approx. 3 1/2 - 4 Cups)
3 Tablespoons Dried Currants, Soaked (or substitute chopped raisins)
1/2 Cup Celery, Finely Chopped
1/4 Cup Fresh Parsley, Finely Chopped
1/2 Small Zucchini, Finely Chopped
1/2 Small Bell Pepper, Finely Chopped
2 Carrots, Finely Chopped
1/4 Cup Shallots, Finely Chopped
1 Tablespoon Orange Zest, Grated
1/4 Cup Fresh Orange Juice
1 Tablespoon Champagne Vinegar (or sub white wine vinegar)
1 ½ Tablespoons Olive Oil
1/4 Teaspoon Salt
Freshly Ground Black Pepper, To Taste
- Prepare quinoa per directions. Eat Inspired Tip: Use a rice cooker to make this step super simple. You can even make quinoa ahead of time and refrigerate. Drain, if necessary, and set aside.
- While you chop or while quinoa cooks, soak the currants to release just a hint of sweet flavor and soften their texture. Chopped raisins or golden raisins can easily be substituted for the currants. Combine 1 cup warm water and currants (or raisins) in a small bowl; let stand 30 minutes. Drain well.
- Combine quinoa, currants, celery, parsley and chopped vegetables. This recipe celebrates summer's bounty! Remember you can easily substitute other fresh, seasonal vegetables that you have on hand or in the garden - simply use the same proportions.
- For the dressing, combine salt, shallots, zest, juice and vinegar in a small bowl. Stir well. Add pepper to taste. Let stand 5 minutes.
- Gently stir in olive oil with a whisk. Pour dressing mixture over quinoa. Toss well to coat.
- Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days.
© Copyright Clea Shannon 2009-2014
Eat Inspired Today™ LLC
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