And Now, A guest post: Summer Quinoa Salad!

Posted on August 9, 2013

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Editor’s Note:
Susan is a dear friend and an inspiration to me in all things motherhood, working & juggling, faith and fun. She’s a designer by day and mommy to two boys round the clock, one of whom makes an appearance here:) Thanks so much for sharing Susan–and for bringing this over to keep me alive and eating healthy during the first days after Corinne was born!

Summer Quinoa Salad

This salad is one of my favorite lunches. I typically make it for dinner then have it for lunch the rest of the week – it is so filling and healthy.

I was inspired to create this recipe after having lunch at www.gatherny.com during my maternity leave early this year. The cafe is a great place to meet friends and the vibe is relaxing (even with kids running around).The lunch was so satisfying and it seemed easy enough to recreate. It is now on our weekly menu at least 3 times a month.

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I hope you enjoy! Amounts are approximate as I eyeball things till it looks like a good mixture to me.

Ingredients:
1 c. dry Red quinoa (I’ve used TJ’s mixed as well)
4-6 oz crumbed Feta or Cojita cheese
1 bunch green grapes, halved ~2-2.5 cups (you can always add more.
1/2 c. Mint leaves sliced
1/2-2/3 c. Pecans

So my trick to fast cooking the quinoa is  boiling 2 cups in my electric kettle and then adding it to my pot on the stove (may not work as well with an electric range). You then stir, turn the stove to low and cover, cooking for 15 min until the germ of the grain is visible (looks like a white spiral).

While the quinoa cooks, slice your grapes in half lengthwise, rough chop your pecans and slice your mint leaves.
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When the quinoa is done, there may still be water. Drain it in a fine sieve and rinse with cool water till it is cool to the touch.

If your two year old hasn’t eaten all the grapes, add the rest of the ingredients to the quinoa in a large bowl and mix. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

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Couldn’t be simpler! You can add salt and pepper to taste, but I find the saltiness from the cheese is enough. I’ve also added balsamic vinegar before but it turned the mint brown. It’s tasty either way and is a refreshing summer meal.

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