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Author Notes: I've been a fan of quinoa for a couple of years and always get a chuckle when people trip over the pronunciation (KEEN-wah)...and I'm amazed that even good cooks don't realize how much seasoning and flavor it needs. Quinoa needs fat/acid/spice. If you see a recipe that only calls for 2 T of lemon juice (Bon Appetit June 2012, p. 105), know that you are going to need to "doctor it up"...Sorry BA! You wouldn't just eat a bowl of steamed white rice....so be prepared to dice a little, mix up an interesting vinagrette and then be wholly satisified that you are eating a "Superfood", an ancient grain, a top 100 food of 2012, etc, etc.... —lorigoldsby
- 1 cup tri-color quinoa
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1/2 bunch watercress or other green (like parsley or cilantro)
- 1/2 bunch mint
- 6-8 mini red, yellow orange peppers, diced (or use 1/2 each of red, yellow, orange bell peppers)
- 1/2 cup heirloom cherry tomatoes, diced
- 1 cucumber, seeded and diced
- 1/4 cup flavored olive oil ( I used a harissa flavored one)
- 1/4 cup neutral oil
- 1/4 cup orange champagne vinegar (I used the one from trader joes)
- 1 lemon, juiced
- kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper, to taste.
- Boil quinoa in 1 1/2 c. of salted water...turn down immediately to a low simmer, cover and cook 10 minutes. Take off heat, let stand 5 minutes. You can then chill grains overnight. If prepping for the next day, wait to add dressing before using, or bring an additional amount to add.
- Add diced veggies and herbs. Original tabbouleh calls for flat leafed parsley but i like the peppery flavor of watercress and the zing of mint.
- Mix together oils and vinegar with lemon juice and salt and pepper with a whisk. If you want a bit of sweetness, but don't have an orange muscat champagne vinegar...add 1 T. orange marmalade or honey and 1 T. OJ to 1/4 c. vinegar.
- Serve with baked pita chips or torn pieces of warm pita bread.
- This salad is great for vegans, vegetarians and those with gluten sensitivites...if you want to make it more of a main dish salad, add some roasted chicken or fish (or for those vegan/vegetarian friends, grilled tempeh)