Happy Wednesday! If you follow me on twitter you’ll know that I had some exciting news yesterday.. my sister had her baby!! She delivered him at Culpepper Regional Hospital so it was a little drive to go see them last night after work, but it was totally worth it. He came at around 5:30 PM weighing in at 9 lbs, 14 oz and 21 inches. He’s a big boy and such a cutie! I’m already in love with him.
And now for a recipe…
Over the weekend I decided to whip up an old household favorite we haven’t had in a while, Greek Quinoa. When I first found and started making the original recipe from Fitness Magazine Isaac and I couldn’t get enough of it. We made it for dinner every other week, took it to any potluck/cookout we were attending and Isaac even made it for a staff meeting at work. It’s one of the those recipes that everyone likes!
Until last weekend we probably hadn’t had it in over a year so I was pretty excited to make it again. Only this time I thought it would be fun to play around with the ingredients a bit and create something a little different. It turned out fabulously so now we have yet another go-to summery quinoa recipe.
White Bean Quinoa Salad
The great thing about this “salad” is that you can prepare it ahead of time! I like making the quinoa the night before and letting it chill in the fridge overnight so all I have to do the next day is mix in the other ingredients and dressing. You could also make the whole salad the night before and let the flavors marinate in the fridge overnight.
- 1 cup uncooked quinoa
- 2 cups water
- 10-15 cherry/grape tomatoes, seeded and finely chopped
- 1 can of cannellini beans or other white bean, drained and rinsed
- 1-2 cups chopped kale, blanched*
- 2/3 cup finely chopped red onion
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (or red wine vinegar)
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/8-1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
- 2 avocados, pitted, peeled, and sliced and chopped
- Bring quinoa and water to a boil in a saucepan. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 15 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed.
- In a medium bowl, stir together quinoa, tomatoes, beans, blanched kale and onion.
- In a small bowl, whisk together lemon juice, oil, salt and pepper. Mix with quinoa, fresh basil and avocado chunks.
- Serve right away or let the mixture chill in the fridge a few hours before serving.
*To blanch kale: wash and de-stem kale, chop it into smallish pieces and add to boiling water for 3 minutes, remove kale from the boiling water with a slotted spoon and place it in a ice water bath. Drain it well, making sure to give it a good squeeze to remove all access liquid.
A few other notes: 1.) If you’re running short on time you can use fresh baby spinach instead of the blanched kale. 2.) The original recipe calls for feta cheese. I left it out this time but Isaac always likes to sprinkle a little on top for that pop of extra flavor.
The great part about this dish is that it has quite a bit of protein from the beans and quinoa and it’s packed with fresh veggies, including kale, which is a nutritional powerhouse. You can feel good about eating a bowl of it for a meal or having it as a side. We’ve done both!