italian quinoa salad.

29 Jun

as i mentioned, we’re trying to keep to our modified elimination diet. it’s proving to be somewhat of a struggle .  a recent household hostess cupcake run solidified the current inability to completely detox. i’ll blame it on work stress…

{cleanse FAIL}

And with 4th of july around the corner, you can bet i love me some bbq’ing and beer. i’ll turn on my catholic guilt and get serious about the elimination diet once the long weekend wraps up and i’m less “party mode leaner”. one probably shouldn’t fantasize about hot dogs and pasta salad when on a non-processed gluten free diet.

one thing we ARE doing right is weekday meals. pats on back! the easiest way for me to stick to the elimination diet for dinners has been to focus on easy & fresh protien and fiber based meals so that I get nutriets and stay full. my hard and fast favorite is to cook a large batch of quinoa and pair it with a mix of veggies and spices/dressing.  if you’re in the same “work till you can’t see straight” phase of your life, then chances are you’re familiar with the concept. [side note that i really enjoy cooking and hope to eventually have more energy post-work to devote to it]

so, here is my most recent creation: an italian quinoa summer salad. if you aren’t familiar with quinoa, it is a light, whole grain packed with protein. i’d put it somewhere between brown rice and cous cous. it is simpler than pasta to make, and much better for you.

1 cup uncooked quinoa
1/2 pound green beans, trimmed, cut into 2-inch pieces, cooked and rinsed
1/2 lb frozen shelled edamame, thawed
1 chopped red pepper
1/2 chopped yellow onion
1/2 lb frozen peas, thawed
1 medium size squash diced
1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup prepared italian dressing
1 teaspoon dried tarragon
salt and ground black pepper

serves: approximately 6 servings

preparing the quinoa
rinse quinoa under cold running water and drain.
if using a rice cooker: measure 1 cup quinoa to 2 cups water and combine in rice cooker. cook on white rice setting. let cool when cooking is finished.

if using stove top: bring 1 3/4 cups water to a boil in a small pot. Stir quinoa and a pinch of salt into water. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until tender and liquid is absorbed, 15 to 20 minutes. Uncover and let cool.

preparing the veggies

{i use a chopper (thanks mom!) for dicing my peskier veggies}

{combine all the chopped veggies into a large bowl. check out those colors.}

{mix it all up}

{voilà! top with italian dressing, mix up, and you’ve got a protein packed meal!}

serve chilled or at room temperature. see, SUPER SIMPLE. i usually keep everything separate, as in the picture above, until right before dining. that way nothing gets soggy and the italian dressing tastes cold and fresh!

One Response to “italian quinoa salad.”

  1. Janet Mulloy June 29, 2011 at 11:26 am #

    makes me hungry just reading and looking at your wonderful photos. Hope your love for cooking is still present when you visit the lake- I would love to be healthy pampered =)

    Copying your recipe for future trials-so love that mini chopper you have lol!

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