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Mexican quinoa salad plus a bit of quinoa information

For a while now I’ve seen all these quinoa recipes and I have wondered what the deal with it is. Is it healthy, is it a pasta, a rice, what exactly is quinoa? After some research I’ve discovered it’s neither rice nor a pasta. It’s actually a seed, well the part we is the seed. Who knew? Not me until doing some reading up on the food. I also found out for about a year I had been pronouncing it wrong….ooops. The correct pronunciation of quinoa is like keen-wah. And just like that I became annoyed by those that mispronounce it, as if I was some kind of expert. If an expert is someone that has eaten their weight in quinoa then count me in. I may or may not have done this in the last year.

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Anywho, back on topic. Let’s examine this beautiful little plant. If you haven’t googled quinoa I suggest you do. You will be amazed at the beauty of the plant. Quinoa is a plant that is considered a complete grain. By that I mean that it is has all nine essential amino acids. Did you also know that it is said that quinoa is said to have health benefits such as reducing the risk of obesity, colon cancer, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes. So maybe eating this little seed quite often could be a good thing.

Since quinoa has a bit of a nutty flavor it is something that can be used in a wide variety of recipes. You can use it in breakfast recipes, salads, dinners and even baking such as muffins. For my household we love to use it in salads. Speaking of salads, I wrote this post to share my favorite salad and here I have been rambling on all the wonderful things about quinoa. Without further delay, I give to you Mexican Quinoa Salad.

Mexican Quinoa Salad
Serves 6
A delicious quinoa salad with a Mexican twist
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
45 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
45 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup Quinoa
  2. 3 cups kale chopped
  3. 1 cup Arugula chopped
  4. 1 cup Spinach chopped
  5. 1/2-1 cup of Tomato varieties chopped
  6. 2 Hearts of palm chopped
  7. 1 Lime
  8. 6 stalks of Green onions chopped
  9. 1/2 cups of thinly sliced green cabbage
  10. 1 Avocado chopped
  11. Guacamole salsa (Herdez brand)
  12. Pepita's
  13. 1 Vegetable bouillon cube
Instructions
  1. Combine one cup rinsed quinoa in two of cups water with a vegetable bouillon and bring to a boil. Cook approximately five minutes. Once it is done you will be able to fluff if with a fork. Place in the fridge inside an extra large mixing bowl to cool.
  2. While the quinoa is cooking start prepping all of your other ingredients, kale, arugula, spinach, hearts of palm, tomatoes, cabbage. Save the avocado until very last as it will brown.
  3. Mix all of the chopped ingredients in with the now cooled quinoa. If you aren't planning on eating all of the quinoa you can save the tomato and avocado till as needed. Squeeze the juice from one lime all over the salad and mix. If you're not a fan of lime use 1/4 to 1/2 as opposed to the whole thing. If you're serving a group then add both the tomato and avocado in as well as the salsa.
  4. To keep the quinoa good for a longer time period do not add the salsa but just a bit on top of each serving.
Notes
  1. Depending on your level for the love of all things spicy, the guacamole salsa may be a bit spicy sooooo go easy at first with how much you put on. Me, I love spicy foods so the more the merrier.
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Balsamic Quinoa with Tofu and Kale Recipe

It’s been a while since I’ve been inspired to create a new recipe. Actually it has been way too long. Today I finally broke my dry spell. I tried my hand at a quinoa recipe, but  without an actual recipe. This is all from scratch. I was a little worried as I have only cooked quinoa once before, and well like I said it’s been a while. So you could imagine my excitement when it came out amazing.

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As of late I have fallen back into old eating habits, aka unhealthy. I need to break that again and stick to it, but now I have realized it’s not just myself who has fallen into those habits, but my children as well. Overall they are pretty healthy eater, but they do love junk food.

My oldest has always been a hard one to get to try new foods. If he could live off of turkey sandwiches, hamburgers and bean and cheese burritos I’m sure he would. I will give him credit though as he has gotten a little better, which may have a little bit to with the fact that I make it harder and harder for him to pick out the good things in meals. But I hall give credit where credit is due. I’m nice like that.

My daughter has been on board with healthy eating. For being only nine I am happily surprised at this. She has always loved certain vegetable but getting her to branch out hasn’t always been easy. Plus we’re limited on a lot sine she is allergic to nuts. But if there is one kid that I know will not only help me cook up new creations, but enjoy them as well, it would be her.

And then there’s my youngest. My wee boy. He actually isn’t that small anymore but he know he’s the baby and will use that knowledge a best he n to get hi way. Little does he know I’m on to him, and have been for years. But I til play along because I do so love a good challenge. And a challenge he is. He may not have the pickiest pallet but he knows what he likes and isn’t too keen on trying things outside of his little box. He does however love salads which makes me very happy.

And look, I’ve gone off an ramble about my loves when I was supposed to be sharing a recipe. If you have a vegetarian in your house, this recipe is completely vegetarian. I hope your family enjoys this one as much as we all did.

Balsamic Quinoa with Tofu & Kale
Serves 6
Handfuls of kale, mushrooms, onions paired perfectly with quinoa and balsamic vinegar
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
50 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
50 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup quinoa
  2. 6 mushrooms diced
  3. 1/2 red onion sliced and quartered
  4. 2-3 cups sliced kale
  5. 3-4 cloves Garlic (1 tsp)
  6. Sea salt (two turns of the salt grinder)
  7. Pepper (1/4 tsp)
  8. Cayenne Pepper (1/8 tsp)
  9. Balsamic Vinegar 1/2 cup)
  10. 1 Vegetable bullion
  11. Olive oil
Instructions
  1. First start with cutting up your tofu. I halve it, then cut into strips then cut again in the other direction to make three across cubed tofu squares.
  2. Coat your pan with the olive oil and cook the tofu on medium high heat. Make sure to mix it every few minutes. While that is cooking chop up the remaining vegetables and set aside.
  3. In a small pot combine two cups water, one cup quinoa and one vegetable bullion. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a summer, cover and cook for 15-20 minutes.
  4. I always add a slight brown to my tofu to give it more texture. Once you see it starting to brown add the onions and mushrooms. Cook for approximately more ten minutes. Add garlic and stir for a minute. Next add your kale, stirring again.
  5. Now my favorite part, add the balsamic vinegar. Stir for one more minute and remove from heat.
  6. By now your quinoa should be done. If all the liquid has cooked out pour it into the large pan with your tofu and vegetables.
  7. Mix together well so the balsamic coats evenly.
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