Lemony Quinoa with Crunch!
May 17, 2011
It finally feels like spring here! I’m not trusting it’s here to stay, so I decided to take advantage of the spring feeling and make this quinoa recipe. I’m not sure whether to call it a salad, a side dish or a main dish – it could be any of those! It can be served warm or room temperature so there are many possibilities. And, it uses preserved lemon, so what’s not to like? (It would be good without the PL if you don’t have any on hand.) I think you’ll find it’s a snap to make with many layers of flavor.
- 1/2 cup chopped roasted almonds or toasted pine nuts
- 1 cup quinoa, thoroughly rinsed (any color will do, even though I favor the red)
- 1 1/2 cups water
- salt to taste
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, or more to taste
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 1/4 red onion, chopped
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 preserved lemon peel, diced (optional)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup fresh parsley, mint or cilantro or a combo
NOTES ON THE INGREDIENTS: I like Trader Joe’s dry roasted Spicy and Tangy Almonds. If you use these, cut back the cayenne pepper to 1/8 teaspoon since the almonds pack a little heat. If you don’t have preserved lemon, I think grated zest of 1 lemon would be delicious.
1. If using pine nuts, toast briefly in a dry skillet over medium heat. This will take about 5 minutes, and stir constantly as they will burn easily. Set aside to cool.
2. In a saucepan, combine the rinsed quinoa, water and salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and cook until quinoa is tender and water has been absorbed, about 15 minutes. Cool slightly, then fluff with a fork.
3. Transfer the quinoa to a serving bowl and stir in the chopped nuts, lemon juice, celery, onion, preserved lemon, cayenne pepper, cumin and herbs. Add the olive oil, then adjust salt/pepper if needed before serving. Serve warm or at room temperature.