I posted this picture on Instagram and Facebook a couple days ago and got such a good reaction that I decided it was blog worthy. I’m still eating the batch I made and it’s just as delicious.
Driving home from work on Sunday evening, I was hungry, tired and craving a shower. My mind turned to “what the heck am I going to make for dinner?” I had not the patience for a long cooking extravaganza. Luckily, quick math reminded me that quinoa only takes 15 minutes and I could definitely multi-task and either shower or get other food thrown together in that time.
I seriously started out thinking I’d just toss some grape tomatoes (my love!) in with quinoa and OH! OLIVES and just splash a little vinegar and oil, sprinkle a little sea salt and pepper and that would totally suffice. But then I got thinking about all the other veggies I could add. Gee, I really needed to get some green stuff in there. And wait, I still had mini peppers. Hmm, mushrooms are nice. OH, and cashews add a nice texture.
So, that’s how this was born.
The veggie chopping is the hardest part, and I have this handheld chopper/scissors like thing from Pampered Chef that made it really easy. I didn’t really measure anything except the quinoa, so these are all estimates. [Vegan and gluten free]
1 cup (dry) quinoa
½ large cucumber
¾ container of grape tomatoes
½ – ¾ of a large red onion
¼ – ½ cup raw cashews
¾ container of baby bella mushrooms ( had the whole ones)
½ – 1 cup olives (I used half green, half black and I used the natural no weird chemical added kind)
5 or so mini peppers (the kind in the bag that are just like lovely little bell peppers)
Sea salt (to taste – I didn’t use very much)
Ground white pepper (didn’t use very much)
Extra virgin olive oil – approx. 1 TBSP
Balsamic Vinegar – approx. 1-2 TBSP
Coriander (a few sprinkles — like everything in this category, it’s to taste)
Garnish – ½ avocado
1-2 cups chopped kale
- Cook quinoa. [Cooking quinoa is 2 parts water to 1 part quinoa. Put it in a saucepan and boil. Once it boils, reduce heat to simmer and cover. It takes about 15 minutes to cook down. Let sit for a few minutes and fluff.]
- While quinoa is cooking, combine all the wonderful plants in a large bowl and chop! If you don’t have the hand chopper thing, chop in whatever fashion works for you to get the plants bite-sized.
- Once quinoa is finished cooking and has fluffed, dump it in the bowl with the veggies and mix it all up!
- Add seasoning items and stir! (I didn’t really measure when I added them, but I didn’t use very much. Definitely adjust to taste.)
- Add some chopped kale to a plate to make a bed for the quinoa-veggie combo and serve it up! I added some avocado slices because they are delicious.