Healthy and Delicious: Confetti Quinoa Salad

[Photograph: Brian Haskell]

Editor's note: On Mondays, Kristen Swensson of Cheap, Healthy, Good swings by these parts to share healthy and delicious recipes with us. Since she's busy getting married and honeymooning this week (congrats Kristen!), her fellow CHG blogger Leigh Angel who writes the Veggie Might column is stepping in. Take it away, Leigh! —The Mgmt.

The only labor you should be performing today is chopping vegetables for this adaptation of Confetti Quinoa Salad from 150 Vegan Favorites by Jay Solomon (one of my most splattered and stained cookbooks). It's a heavy-rotation meal in my kitchen because you can use whatever vegetables are in season.

This simple, versatile, and flavor-packed quinoa dish works superbly as an everyday lunch, picnic salad, or a fancy dinner side dish. The red bean-quinoa combo makes it hearty enough to stand alone and with all those vegetables and a lime-jalapeño vinaigrette, it can't help being tasty.

Unless you have a food processor (or an assistant), the chopping will take about a half an hour, but the quinoa and corn will have cooked up nicely in the meantime, and if you let a slow cooker handle your beans, you won't have to stand over the stove for more than a few minutes. Plus, it has a high return on investment, with supreme leftover potential.

While the concoction features a rainbow of delicious flavors, the corn is really the star. Whip it up while the sweet stuff is still in season—or go with frozen if fresh corn is not available where you live. That made me sad to write; I hope you have fresh corn where you live.

Happy Labor Day, everyone.

Healthy and Delicious: Confetti Quinoa Salad

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About This Recipe

Yield:4 to 6
Active time:30 to 40 minutes
Total time:45 to 50 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups red beans
  • 2 shallots
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 jalapeño pepper
  • 2 cups fresh corn, cut from cob
  • 3 tablespoons parsley
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • Sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

Procedures

  1. 1

    Rinse quinoa to remove bitter coating. Then cook quinoa in water for 15 minutes or until fluffy. Set aside.

  2. 2

    Dice red onion, red bell pepper, carrot. Seed and mince jalapeño pepper. Keep the seeds for a spicier salad. Chop parsley. Combine all the chopped vegetables in a large mixing bowl along with corn.

  3. 3

    Add oil, lime juice, salt, and pepper to the vegetables and stir well to combine.

  4. 4

    Toss quinoa with veggies, serve warm or chilled, and swoon.

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