Quinoa and avocado salad

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Jenni here typing for Kristina as we hurtle towards Cocoa beach to see our friends in Ancient Sun play their one year anniversary show!

While I (jenni) have converted to a full vegan diet, Kristina is slowly coming around and is pleased with our selections so far! “If I knew that vegan food wasn’t all nasty tofu and fake meat I would have changed a long time ago” she lamented. I would like to point out that I rarely cook with fake meat, and tofu is a bit weird…and I only use it sparingly. Nevertheless, I am thrilled that she is appeasing me while I am on my culinary journey. She will still post non vegan things when we cook separately, so fear not out non vegan readers! Now to the recipe.

The following recipe comes from “The Kind Diet” online resources, and combines some of my favorite things… Quinoa, tomatoes, spinach, and avocados. It also called for cilantro which I still had in stock.

Ingredients

1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
2 cups vegetable broth
2 cups chickpeas (canned or fresh cooked)
2 cups spinach
1 cup cilantro
2 lemons (one of which was zested)
3 garlic cloves
1 onion (Kristina kept these on the side so I wouldn’t have to pick them out!)
A handful of cherry tomatoes diced
2 taps Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp agave nectar
2 tsp olive oil
Black pepper to taste
2 avocados

Cook the quinoa in the two cups of veggie broth (we used bullion) for 15 minutes at a boil and then reduce to low medium and wait until the quinoa takes soaks up all of the water. Meanwhile we were cooking the beans in my rice cooker. Using my favorite appliance, other than my rice cooker, chop the spinach and cilantro in a blender. A food processor would also suffice. Place the diced greens in a separate bowl. Add garlic and onions (or not if you are like me!) into the blender and chop up as well. Place these in the green mixture, add hand diced tomatoes and set aside. Once the chickpeas are done cooking, or released from their canned prison, add them to the mixture.

Now it is time to make the dressing. Combine the olive oil, lemon zest, juice from the lemons (Kristina interjected that you should only use one of the lemons for juice and I agree with her), cumin, black pepper, agave nectar, and Dijon mustard. Stir vigorously (although be careful, Kristina got it on her shirt!).

Add all of the ingredients together and mix…add the avocados (cut into small pieces) The original recipe says to let it sit and meld the flavors together but we were in a hurry so this didn’t happen.

Result? This was amazing…the photo doesn’t do it justice (I admit it is a little scary looking). In Kristina’s words “more avocados!! Never too much avocados!” Until tomorrow, have a good night!

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