Month: May 2022

Strawberry Basil Quinoa Salad

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Delicious Quinoa Recipe

Quinoa is a flowering plant grown primarily for its edible seeds.  And it is one of the only plant-based foods that is a complete protein.  A complete protein has all nine amino acids that your body can’t produce. Most animal products are great sources of these amino acids, which makes them complete proteins. But as those following a plant-based diet know, it is very difficult to find foods containing these nine amino acids in the necessary amounts. 

But while quinoa is amazing, it also has an acquired taste that most people don’t like.  This recipe makes quinoa approachable to the average person.  So give it a try.  You won’t regret it.  Bon appétite!!

Strawberry Basil Quinoa Salad

The folks who promote California strawberries sponsored a national cook-off for kids and challenged them to come up with a quick creative recipe. A 12-year-old from Maryland took the prize for this grain salad, which the cook-off judge, a former MasterChef Junior winner himself, proclaimed easy, healthy and, of course most important, delicious.

Ingredients

  • 3 cups water
  • 1 ½ cups quinoa
  • ¾ teaspoon salt, divided
  • ⅓ cup lemon juice 
  • ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons pure maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon ground pepper
  • 2 cups diced strawberries
  • ½ cup chopped fresh basil
  • ½ cup crumbled feta cheese

Directions

Step 1 Combine water, quinoa and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a large saucepan. Bring to a simmer over high heat. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer, cover and cook until the quinoa is tender and the water is absorbed, 12 to 15 minutes. Let cool for 15 minutes.

Step 2 Meanwhile, whisk lemon juice, oil, maple syrup, pepper and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large bowl.

Step 3 Add the cooked quinoa, strawberries, basil and feta to the dressing; stir to combine.

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Farro & Arugula Salad

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Farro & Arugula salad

Ingredients (Salad):

  • 2 large handfuls of arugula 
  • 1/2 cup farro, cooked
  • 1/2 head asparagus, sliced on a diagonal 
  • 1 bunch grapes, figs (and)/or peaches
  • 2 handfuls fennel, shaved
  • 1/4 cup roasted hazelnuts, chopped
  • And a handful of fresh herbs (chives, fennel fonds, mint, or as desired) 
  • 8-10 slices of fresh pecorino

Ingredients (Dressing):

  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp reduced balsamic vinegar 
  • 1 tsp raw honey
  • 1/2 tsp dijon mustard Salt & pepper, as desired
  • 1 tsp minced shallot, optional
  • Fresh herbs, as desired

Directions:

  1. To make the dressing, combine all of the ingredients in a mason Seal and shake vigorously to emulsify the olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Set aside.
  2. Place farro in a stockpot and cover in about two inches of water. Add a dash of salt and bring to Reduce heat to low and let simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit for an additional 10 minutes. Remove excess water and spread on a baking sheet to cool.
  3. Meanwhile, soak the shaved fennel in a bowl of water with juice from half a lemon, to ensure the fennel does not oxidize.
  4. Char the grapes over an open flame or on your grill, cooking for about 2-3 minutes on each side or just till browned. If using figs or peaches, slice the fruits in half before grilling.
  5. To prepare the asparagus, bring a small pot of water to Separately combine ice and water in a medium-sized bowl. Add sliced asparagus to boiling water and cook for 1-2 minutes, just till al dente. Drain immediately and dunk into the ice water. (This will ensure the asparagus maintains its bright and beautiful color)
  6. To assemble the salad, first toss the farro with 1-2 Tbsp of them, combine arugula, farro, grapes, herbs, and drained fennel and toss with dressing, salt and pepper.
  7. Plate and garnish with hazelnuts 

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