Thursday, June 14, 2012

garden quinoa

Yesterday I did a bit of harvesting in the garden! I can't tell you how excited I was to pull up my first radishes! They're so cute and quite easy to grow! I wanted to use my arugula, arugula flowers, herbs, and radishes from the garden so I decided to put them into a quinoa. Quinoa is actually quite easy to make. It's really just like any garden salad, you can pretty much throw anything in there and it will taste wonderful. I found a recipe in the June 2012 issue of bon appetit for the dressing and directions on how to cook the quinoa and then changed it to what I had on hand. The recipe in bon appetit calls for parsley but I've learned I really don't like the flavor of parsley all that well so I substituted arugula and cilantro. This salad is delicious! And healthy! I served it alongside a grilled flank steak because if there is no meat then my husband feels like there has been no dinner. ha! My kids won't really eat quinoa so I made them rice on the side instead. What's great is there's plenty of leftovers for a light and healthy lunch today!

Garden Quinoa - adapted from Bon Appetit

1 c quinoa, rinsed well
1/2 t salt, plus more
2 T fresh lemon juice
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 c extra virgin olive oil
freshly ground black pepper
1 large english cucumber, cut into 1/4" pieces
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
2 radishes, cut into thin slices
a handful of cilantro, chopped
a handful of arugula, chopped
a handful of fresh mint, chopped
2 scallions, thinly sliced
arugula flowers to make it pretty, if you have them

Bring quinoa, 1/2 t salt, and 1 1/4 c water to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until quinoa is tender, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork.

Meanwhile, whisk lemon juice and garlic in a small bowl. Gradually whisk in olive oil. Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper.

Spread out quinoa on a large rimmed baking sheet; let cool. Transfer to a large bowl; mix in 1/4 c dressing. Chill.

Add your fresh vegetables and herbs to the quinoa. Toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Drizzle remaining dressing over.

And here are some beautiful peonies from my garden. I'm enjoying bringing in vegetables, herbs, and flowers from the yard. There is such a sense of accomplishment. I've been working on my garden for 8 years. Getting my hands in the dirt is a little like therapy. As I work I feel the stress melt away.

I hope you're enjoying a lovely summer and spending lots of time outdoors and eating wonderful summery meals with your families!

Have a marvelous weekend!

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  1. I have a big bag of this in my pantry so I needed a recipe! Thanks Lissa girl! :)

  2. I am pinning this now. Looks delicious. And I don't know if I ever thanked you for introducing me to Studio Patro tea towels. I feel like I have a little bit of your kitchen in mine :)

  3. pinning this. i'm going to learn to love quinoa if it's the last thing i do. beautiful shots girlie.

  4. It's so exciting isn't it, to harvest what you have lovingly cared for? And then to make a delicious meal with it. Your peonies are beautiful. I am having to snatch tiny bits of time in my garden at the moment due to the most awful weather here in England, it just won't stop raining. And because of the nasty weather there are lots of nasty slugs and they've been munching my carrots. Urghh. Please send us some sunshine!!

  5. this looks SO SO SO good....and all from your beautiful garden - "Mary Quite Contrary!" xoxo love you xoxo

  6. I'm so impressed that you are harvesting from your own garden.
    I feel a little embarrassed that my parents have grown a huge garden for the past 45 years that feeds half our community, and I haven't mastered growing my own garden.

    This WILL change now that we have our very own place.

    Your pictures are beautiful!!!

  7. I think beets, radishes and multi-colored carrots are my favorite garden things to photograph. Maybe it's that little bit of dirt, the brilliant color and the leafy tops. Beautiful job! xoxo!

  8. It sounds delicious! I can't remember the last time I had a radish. Yours looks lovely!

  9. yay you!!
    this looks gorgeous & delish

    radishes are so cute aren't they?

  10. Thanks for the recipe! It looks really delicious.

  11. I JUST noticed you are on Instagram... LOVE the beautiful pics!! :)

  12. How wonderful that you're already harvesting some garden goodies! We live a little further north of you and I'm lucky to get some parsley & chives for garnishing! Could have something to do with the fact that you're actually tending to your garden...Quinoa is a favorite around here so the recipe you shared has already been printed off and in my 'gonna make soon', pile! Your photos are beautiful!

    On a side note--I wanted to get your take on the shelving display unit in your dining room. After seeing yours and falling madly in like:) I bookmarked the info until I was ready to see if I could make it work in our tiny little cabin we are remodeling. We will make this our year round home which means I'm extremely downsizing. The pieces I bring with or purchase have to be basically very utilitarian! So back in the dark days of winter I ordered the piece and it will be delivered either later this week or early next. Now I'm starting to question if I did the right thing...but that's nothing new:) So in my long rambling usual way I was just wondering if you have ever wished you had purchased something maybe smaller or just something all together different? Thanks so much for your time! ~Dona

  13. Hi Lissa, with your instagram pics it looks like you use the "same" filter on every photo. Which filter are you using with the white border? Regards Kathy A, Brisbane, Australia

    1. Hi Kathy. I use the amaro one the most but not every time. It does not have a white border. That's just something that shows up on instagrid.