Sunday, September 09, 2007

Toasted Quinoa, Snow Peas, Tomatoes, and Mozzarella Salad

I'm a fan of quinoa, especially when lots of things are mixed into it. Not only is it healthy and delicious, but it makes for a good lunch the next day. This recipe from the June 2007 Cooking Light was quick and tasty, though probably not a make-again. I look forward to it being in my lunchbox tomorrow (and dinner-box, since I have night class on Mondays, sigh).

Substitutions: Dried basil instead of fresh (but we did use fresh mint!), bottled lemon juice instead of all the lemon zest and juice, and tiny perlini mozzarella from Trader Joe's instead of diced mozzarella (use this if you can find it! it was cool!)

Toasted Quinoa, Snow Peas, Tomatoes, and Mozzarella Salad

1 1/2 cups uncooked quinoa, rinsed and drained
3 cups water
1 cup diagonally cut snow peas
3/4 cup (3 ounces) diced fresh mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/2 cup chopped seedless cucumber
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
4 teaspoons extravirgin olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce (such as Tabasco)

Heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add quinoa to pan; cook 5 minutes or until toasted, stirring frequently. Add 3 cups water to pan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and cook 15 minutes or until tender. Fluff with a fork; cool. Place quinoa in a large bowl. Add peas and next 6 ingredients (through tomatoes).

Combine rind and remaining ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add juice mixture to quinoa mixture; toss gently to coat.

Yield: 6 servings

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