This salad offers a just a few more seasonal treats, along with cold cooked quinoa. Isn’t it colorful? And it is oh-so-delicious. Adding chicken and cheese — or how about some diced hard-boiled eggs? — turns it into a main dish. Such an easy meal!
I make this salad using the dump method. Have I not shared this method yet? 😉 You dump a bunch of ingredients in a biiiiggggg bowl, and then mix. Taste, adjust, and mix some more.
Quinoa Garden Salad
- a few cucumbers diced (peeled if desired)
- a few bell peppers diced
- a few tomatoes diced (using Romas keeps them firm longer)
- a few carrots shredded
- an onion or half, diced
- a few cloves garlic crushed
- a few sprigs herbs chopped (or use pinches of dried)
- a hunk raw cheese diced
- a few handfuls cooked chicken diced
- 3 to 5 cups quinoa soaked and cooked*
- extra virgin olive oil to taste
- a drizzle sesame oil or toasted, to taste
- sea salt to taste
- pepper to taste
- apple cider vinegar OR coconut vinegar or lemon juice, to taste
Combine all ingredients in a big bowl.
Mix well, but gently.
Taste and adjust seasonings.
Chill or serve immediately.
Low Vitamin A variation: Choose low Vitamin A veggies, such as peeled cucumbers, radishes, and green beans. Use avocado oil instead of extra virgin olive oil and sesame oil. Omit cheese and pepper.
*Now, don't be scared away by having to soak and cook the quinoa ahead of time (soaking and cooking whole grains). Nothing scary about it! (But if you need some handholding, check out the Fundamentals eCourse.)
Let's say you want to eat this salad tomorrow night.
Tonight, rinse about 3 cups of quinoa under running water for 2 minutes.
Put it in a pot with 6 warm cups of water and 6 tablespoons of some acid (apple cider vinegar, Kombucha, kefir, yogurt, etc.).
Cover the pot, and let it sit out for a minimum of 7 hours, but probably until tomorrow morning.
Then put the pot on the stove and cook the quinoa, by bringing it to a boil, then turning it down to a simmer, covered.
It will probably cook in 10 to 20 minutes.
Turn off the heat.
Let it cool.
Then tomorrow afternoon, dump it into the bowl with all the other ingredients.
See, that wasn't so hard, was it?
I thought you all would enjoy seeing the visitors in my picture!
Interested other cold grain salads? Check out Erin’s colorful and tasty smoked salmon and rice salad. And Katie @ Kitchen Stewardship uses my favorite grain, spelt, in her cold spelt salad. I haven’t tried whole spelt berries in a grain salad yet, but since her family loves that salad, it’s on my list.
What else would you add to this salad? What other veggies are dying to get dumped into the bowl, too?
...without giving up the foods you love or spending all day in the kitchen!
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