Quinoa Summer Salad

By now, I'm sure you've heard of Quinoa (here's how you say it: Keen-Wa, just in case you haven't jumped on the band wagon yet). I'm not the first to conform to trends, but when it comes to food I'll pretty much try them all. Quinoa is a keeper in my book. It's very versatile, so this won't be the last time you see it on my blog. Before you scroll down to the recipe, if your new to Quinoa, take a look at some of the reasons you should be eating it:

- It's actually a seed, not a grain, so it's not starchy.

-It's easy to cook

- It takes less time to cook than rice

-It contains all 9 amino acids

- It has the highest protein content of all whole grains, even thought it's not a whole grain it's compared to them--go figure.

-It's gluten free

- Cholesterol free

-It's an ancient grain, meaning it is not refined and processed like many of our grains today, so it comes in its purest form. Yay!

About the summer salad: You can add whatever variations you want. If I had feta cheese, I would have put feta on the top. This salad was born on the fly after I had a similar one in the Sacramento Airport. I loved it so much that I came home and made my own similar one with whatever I had. The options on this salad really are endless. Be creative.

Quinoa Summer Salad

Salad greens

1/4 C. Quinoa, cooked

1 hard boiled egg, sliced

4 cucumber, sliced

1 Tomato, small, diced

Sprouts

Pumpkin seeds, raw

Sunflower seeds, raw

* feta cheese, optional

Dressing: Roasted Red Pepper Salad Dressing

Prepare salad by placing the greens in the salad bowl first. Going around the perimeter of the bowl, add the quinoa, hard boiled egg, cucumber, and chopped tomatoes. In the center of the bowl add the sprouts and any feta cheese if you choose. Sprinkle with raw pumpkin and sunflower seeds. Drizzle with Roasted Red Pepper Salad Dressing.

Serves 1

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