Barefoot by the Sea: Quin-WHAT? Friday recipe...

Friday, July 23, 2010

Quin-WHAT? Friday recipe...

My sister in law sent me this recipe earlier this week and I'm hooked!  Super fresh, easy and light enough for a Summer meal.  Hit your Farmer's Market and you'll be good to go!  
Spicy Quinoa, Cucumber and Tomato Salad 
1 cup quinoa
3 cups water
Salt to taste
2 cups diced cucumber
1 small red onion, finely minced (optional)
2 cups finely diced tomatoes
1 to 2 jalapeño or serrano peppers (to taste), seeded if desired and finely chopped
1/2 cup chopped cilantro, plus several sprigs for garnish
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar or sherry vinegar
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 avocado, sliced, for garnish 
Sprinkle with feta if you want!

1. Place the quinoa in a bowl, and cover with cold water. Let sit for five minutes. Drain through a strainer, and rinse until the water runs clear. Bring the 3 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add salt (1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon) and the quinoa. Bring back to a boil, and reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer 15 minutes or until the quinoa is tender and translucent; each grain should have a little thread. Drain off the water in the pan through a strainer, and return the quinoa to the pan. Cover the pan with a clean dishtowel, replace the lid and allow to sit for 10 minutes. If making for the freezer, uncover and allow to cool, then place in plastic bags. Flatten the bags and seal.
2. Meanwhile, place the finely diced cucumber in a colander, and sprinkle with salt. Toss and allow to sit for 15 minutes. Rinse the cucumber with cold water, and drain on paper towels. If using the onion, place in a bowl and cover with cold water. Let sit for five minutes, then drain, rinse with cold water and drain on paper towels.
3. Combine the tomatoes, chiles, cilantro, vinegar, lime juice and olive oil in a bowl. Add the cucumber and onion, season to taste with salt, and add the quinoa and cilantro. Toss together, and taste and adjust seasonings. Serve garnished with sliced avocado and cilantro sprigs.
Yield: Serves six.
Advance preparation: The quinoa freezes well, and the assembled salad will keep for a day in the refrigerator. The leftovers will be good for a couple of days. 
(recipe and photo from New York Times online)

A little more info on Quinoa - 
Quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) is not a grain; it is actually a seed and related to the spinach family. When cooked, quinoa is light, fluffy, slightly crunchy and subtly flavored. It actually cooks and tastes like a grain, making it an excellent replacement for grains that are difficult to digest.  Some of the nutrients in quinoa include:
  • It's a complete protein. Quinoa contains all 9 essential amino acids that are required by the body as building blocks for muscles.
  • It's full of magnesium which  helps relax your muscles and blood vessels and effects blood pressure. Quinoa contains high levels of this vital nutrient.
  • It's full of fiber. Quinoa is a wonderful way to ensure that you consume valuable fiber that eases elimination and tones your colon.
  • It's a great source for manganese and copper. Quinoa is a good source of these minerals that act as antioxidants in your body to get rid of dangerous cancer and disease-causing substances. 
Have a wonderful weekend everybody!  Also, if you haven't already entered, be sure to check out the giveaways over on the right sidebar.  Lots of great shops and items to check out! 


  1. love quinoa! Not many people have heard of it! Glad to see it get some face time! Recipe looks fab! My vegetarian friends always appreciate when I do a quinoa dish!

    hugs! Kim @
    party inspiration

  2. I have never heard of quinoa! Even with all the cooking shows I watch! This recipe looks good but I don't think I could get anyone at my house to eat it! LOL

  3. I absolutely LOVE quinoa in this type of recipe. (We've even had it for breakfast - added chopped apples, a little maple syrup, whatever else sounds good!)

    Awesome stuff. :-)



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