Saturday, January 7

qui-no-a vs. quin-wah

a friend and i made this tonight as we half-paid attention to the lions v. saints game. when i first suggested it as our culinary adventure for the evening, i pronounced it qui-no-a. i was quickly corrected and maybe slightly ridiculed. either way you pronounce it, though, this recipe is pretty fabulous. we liked it so much we ate it standing up, straight out of the bowl.


quinoa and avocado salad with lemon tahini dressing (serves 2)
  • 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa 
  • 1 cup water 
  • pinch of salt 
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced 
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped 
  • 1/2 red onion, diced 
  • 1 avocado, diced 
in a medium saucepan, heat the quinoa and water until boiling. reduce heat to low/medium and simmer until the quinoa has absorbed the water and fluffs up, about 15 minutes. drain any extra water and set aside to cool.

make the dressing while the quinoa is cooking.

lemon tahini dressing
  • 2 tbsp tahini 
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic (about 1 clove) 
  • 1 tbsp olive oil 
  • 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice 
  • pinch of salt 
whisk together the garlic, tahini, lemon juice, and olive oil. add hot water to thin (if desired) and then the salt.

toss the cooked quinoa, cilantro, red onion, bell pepper, and half of the dressing. add more dressing to taste. toss the avocado in last.

notes from the wanna-be chef
  • my friend and i made this as a main dish, but if you are making it for a side, then it probably feeds 3-4 people. 
  • word of warning: easy on the red onion! don't feel like you need to add it all. however, if you are particularly fond of red onion, then just make sure that a) you don't plan on kissing anyone right after eating, or b) have gum or after-dinner mints handy in case kissing is on the menu. 
  • there are probably endless possibilities to the additions that you could make to this recipe: tomatoes, broccoli, spinach, chicken, shrimp, black beans, kidney beans, feta cheese...  all you would have to do is adjust your amount of quinoa and dressing.
(original recipe found here.)

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