Friday, June 15, 2012
Quinoa is a tricky word to pronounce the first time you see it. I had to be corrected by a bookstore clerk where I was looking for a wholegrain cookbook. I was a little apprehensive about trying quinoa for the first time - I bought a box of it and put it in my cupboard but by the time I was ready to experiment with it, it had expired. Needless to say, I went out and bought some new from the Bulk Barn. The recipe I wanted to try used the traditional variety but the BB had only the red in organic so I got that instead. I must say the salad I made with it was delicious and I will make it again and again.
I am crazy for wholegrain salads so I will feature them frequently. They make the perfect work lunch for me because I don't like to microwave my food. This salad features green lentils, sweet red pepper, feta, red quinoa and fresh mint with a lemony dijon dressing. Add some crisp baby arugula and enjoy!
*Quinoa and Lentil Salad*
2/3 cup dried green lentils
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
1 sweet red pepper, chopped finely
2-3 green onions chopped
1/2 cup feta, crumbled or shredded
3 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 teaspoons dijon mustard
salt and pepper to taste - I found the feta alone added enough saltiness and did not add salt
Rinse lentils and gently boil in salted water for 30 minutes or until tender but still firm. Drain and set aside to cool. Rinse quinoa thoroughly with warm water ( about 3 minutes) to remove the bitter coating. Drain well and cook in the 2 cups of water for 15 minutes (or as per package instructions). Let sit 10 minutes. If there is still water in the quinoa you may drain it. Add the cooled lentils and quinoa to the red pepper, mint, green onions and feta in a large bowl. Make a dressing by whisking the olive oil, lemon juice, dijon, salt and pepper and mix well with the salad ingredients. Add as much arugula as you like. Yummy!