Quinoa Salad

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Quinoa-Salad.jpgby:  Kathy Glass, Director of Macaroni Salad, Platypus Tours

Wine Pairing Suggestion: Pairs beautifully with a slightly chilled un-oaked Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc.

A delightful salad for warm days or evenings.  Quinoa meets many dietary requests in that it's gluten/wheat free, a natural protein and very tasty.  This dish is versatile as well.  Just leave out the cucumber and cilantro and serve it warm as a side dish in colder times of the year.
Ingredients
  • 1 cup "regular" quinoa
  • 2 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 small onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 cucumbers, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 2 yellow/summer squash chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped
  • 3-4 scallions chopped
  • 1/4 cup cilantro de-stemmed and chopped
  • 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • White pepper
  • Kosher salt
Preparation
Wash quinoa in at least 5 changes of water, rubbing grains and letting them settle before pouring off water, until water runs clear. Drain in a large sieve. Add quinoa and coarsely chopped onions  to a saucepan of boiling broth. Cover,  reduce heat and cook approximately 20-30 minutes.

OR - the easy way is to put in rice cooker and follow directions provided by the rice cooker for rice. What I like to do for extra flavor is add the chopped onion with the quinoa and broth in the rice cooker. After quinoa has cooled to room temperature add remaining vegetables and herbs and gently mix together. Sprinkle kosher salt and white pepper to taste. I would suggest about 1-2 tablespoons salt and enough pepper until the top of the quinoa is dusty looking. Whisk rice wine vinegar and olive oil together and drizzle over quinoa mixing until it glistens.

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