Asian Quinoa Salad: Late nights in the kitchen

Because Husband works long hours, I often have to serve a second dinner (I eat with Children at a normal hour) closer to 9 or sometimes even 10 pm.  This means setting the table a second time, laying out dishes, reheating, or preparing another meal at the later hour, and  as Husband is particularly against eating alone, sitting with him while he consumes food.

The other evening, as he sat in front of an uninspired meal (his opinion not mine) he suddenly lit up and said, “Oh!  I ate this REALLY yummy thing, kind of couscous like, but not really, kind of rice like, but not really, kind of pasta, but not that either.  It was AWESOME!”

He looked so excited I began racking my brain and asked, “Was it quinoa?”

“Keen who?  I have no idea with that is.”

I rummaged around and showed him a couple of pictures, and said, “Was it something like this?”

He nodded slowly and said, “I think so.  This one was AWESOME!  It had orange segments and some sort of dressing” and he waxed on and on about the number of servings he had of the dish as I mentally thought, “Quinoa?  I’ve been making it for you and you keep rejecting it.”

And so, because of my nutty need to be the source of all yummy food, I set out to make a yummy WOM version of quinoa.  I wanted light and bright Asian flavors, and just something that would taste good next to nearly everything.  I wanted it to be sturdy enough to take on picnics and bbq’s this summer, and mild enough that everyone could enjoy.

This is the salad I made, and it is yummy.  I do think it tastes better chilled as it is refreshing and the little crunchy bits of bell peppers just make it taste extra fresh. If you wanted to venture out and add cilantro (I would love to only Husband is not a fan) I think it would also taste really good.

Asian Quinoa Salad
Serves 4 to 6

1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
½ teaspoon salt

¼ cup vegetable oil
¼ cup rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon honey
½ teaspoon pepper
¼ teaspoon salt

1 cup finely chopped scallions
1 cup finely chopped bell peppers (red, orange or yellow)

In a large heavy saucepan add quinoa, water, and salt.  Bring to a boil uncovered, and once boiling, cover, and reduce heat to simmer.  Cook for 10 to 15 minutes until all water is absorbed.  Check to see that quinoa is translucent and the germ is visible (the fine line).  Remove from heat and remove quinoa from pot to cool.  Set aside.

While quinoa cools, whisk together oil, vinegar, soy sauce, honey, and salt and pepper.  Pour over quinoa and toss.  Add bell peppers and scallions.   Season with salt and pepper if necessary.

Can be served at room temperature or chilled (which I think tastes even better!)  Allow to cool and then refrigerate if you want to have it cold.

Printable recipe

The measuring cups where I love to whisk my dressings.  Awesome kitchen tool.

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