Oh...the holidays. So much fun but so much food! I don't know about you but I'm already feeling like I've eaten and imbibed a bit too much and we still have weeks to go. Can I start my New Years resolutions early this year? Hit the gym...eat salads more often...put down the craft beer? I love holiday food, all of it really. Cookies, hot spiked cider, roast meats, cheese. It's all so good, but leaves me feeling bloated and my pants a bit ill fitting. Thank goodness for oversized sweaters and leggings to hide my holiday indulgences!
This quick salad is a great source of protein, it's vegetarian, and a great light lunch option. I love quinoa; it's chock full of protein and vitamins and gluten free! If you can't find red quinoa, any variety will work, but the red quinoa has a nuttier flavor that I prefer. Quinoa can be substituted for rice and has a great 'toothsome' quality that reminds me of a perfectly al dente rice or pasta.
Start this salad by cooking the quinoa in a 1 to 2 ratio. 1 cup of dried quinoa in 2 cups of water. Rinse the quinoa well and combine quinoa and 2 cups of water in a saucepan. Bring the quinoa to a boil and simmer until the water is absorbed, about 10-15 minutes. Fluff quinoa and cool in a large bowl.
Prepare the vegetables for the salad. Dice 1 seedless cucumber in a small dice, half 1 cup of cherry tomatoes, and mince 1/4 of a red onion. Toss vegetables with the quinoa. Add 1 cup of crumbled feta cheese 1/2 cup of black olives and 2 tablespoons of minced fresh mint.
For the dressing, in a large bowl combine 2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar, the juice of 1 lemon, and 1/4 cup of olive oil. Salt and pepper to taste and whisk until combined. Drizzle dressing over the salad and mix until well coated.
This salad is ready to go right away, but refrigerated overnight the flavor will really develop. If preparing this ahead of time, I would recommend making 1 1/2 times the dressing and reserving a third of it to add to the salad if needed. As it sits, the quinoa may absorb too much dressing and nobody wants a dry salad.
Next time you're feeling like the holidays are winning and your waistline is resembling Frosty the Snowman's, an simple salad can be so refreshing!
Greek Quinoa SaladBy Land of Noms, December 7, 2014
- 1 cup of red quinoa
- 1 seedless cucumber, diced
- 1 cup of cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/2 cup of black olives, halved if too large
- 1/4 of a red onion, minced
- 1 cup of crumbled feta
- 2 tablespoons of fresh mint, minced
- 2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1/4 cup of olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- Cook quinoa in 2 cups of water; bring to a boil and simmer 10-15 minutes or until water is absorbed
- Fluff and cool quinoa in a large bowl
- When quinoa is cool, add cucumber, tomatoes, black olives, red onion, mint and feta; toss to combine
- In a small bowl, whisk together red wine vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil, and salt and pepper
- Drizzle dressing over salad and toss well to combine
- Serve immediately at room temperature or refrigerate and serve cold
Sharing our culinary adventures in Cascadia with simple, sustainable & satisfying eats. Bon Appétit!