This salad is bursting with flavour and is a great Summer dish. It can be made in advance and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator making it ideal for packed lunches, picnics and as a side with an evening meal to have during the week. I like to add chopped avocado to it just before serving.
Quinoa is an excellent source of protein and as it contains all the essential amino acids, it is considered a complete protein. Quinoa is easy to digest and as it is gluten free, it is a great alternative for those who can’t eat gluten.
-1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
-3 tomatoes, diced
-1/2 cup olives, stones removed & roughly chopped
-1/2 cup sundried tomatoes, roughly chopped
-2 roasted red peppers (either from a jar or roasted by you), roughly chopped
-1/2 an English cucumber, diced
-1/4 red onion, peeled & diced
-a handful of basil leaves, roughly chopped
-salt & pepper
How To Make
Rinse the quinoa thoroughly with cold water. Move the quinoa around with your hand so it is getting a good rinse, rinsing helps remove the bitter taste caused by a naturally occurring chemical called saponin that coats quinoa – the saponin helps to ward off insects.
Once rinsed, place the quinoa in a medium sized pan and cover with 1 cup of water and a pinch of salt. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and bring to the boil.
Once boiling, reduce heat to low and simmer for 20-22 minutes. Once cooked, remove from the heat, fluff the quinoa with a fork and allow to cool.
Whilst the quinoa is cooling, prepare all your veggies.
In a large bowl, mix together the quinoa and vegetables and basil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
You can pour over a dressing just before serving or leave a selection of dressings on the table for each person to select their own. I normally just make a simple dressing of olive oil, balsamic vinegar and some dried herbs mixed together, it’s a simple dressing which works well with this salad.
This salad stores well in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.