Sometimes, I yearn to be inspired. However, inspiration for me does not just show up on demand. Instead, it just arrives, like a random thought. Minute in the bigger scheme of things but significant enough to make me feel an internal spark that is completely fueled by creativity. One day not so long ago I felt that spark upon seeing a picture of a beautiful salad. Despite not knowing exactly what it was I was inspired to try this beautiful yet unique dish. The salad was not made with lettuce, croutons or covered with a heavy dressing. Instead it was made with a grain I had never heard of called Red Quinoa. I could barely pronounce it. I felt like Kanye West, “Pass the versaychee” (instead of Versace). I asked my favorite chef at Wegmans about the “Kwuh-No-Uh” only to later find out from one of my vegetarian friends that it was actually pronounced “Kwin-wah”. I may not have been able to pronounce the name of the grain but I knew I wanted to make salad.
This salad was so colorful that it looked like a bowl full of jewels. I was immediately inspired to try this dish. I thought to myself, this salad makes me feel healthier just by looking at it. I felt like I had already lost 15 pounds and was ready to go on a 5 mile run. So, of course, I decided to make this superfood that would give me super powers. Well, unfortunately much to my chagrin, no 5 miles runs were or are in my future (although I will walk the heck out of any trail) and for darn sure no 15 pound weight loss.
However, all illusions were worth it as this is one tasty dish. It is also easy to make and since Quinoa is a superfood, (It contains more protein than any other grain) it is super duper healthy and good for you. I try not to eat much pasta and while I love my veggies on the side, I was happy to have an additional side dish to add to my rotation. I ended up serving my salad with juicy, tender, pan seared scallops. As I enjoyed each morsel I felt like I was eating lunch at a a fancy cafe instead of in my kitchen. Something about this dish just transported me to another calming relaxing place. Of course, that could also have been due to the fact that my children were in their respective daycare and school and I was home with a rare day off. Wow, I need to have another day like that soon, but I digress.
Now, I must be clear, I can not take credit for creating this salad. It is a recipe completely created by Wegmans (www.wegmans.com). However, I enjoyed it and I thought you might enjoy it also. I also I chose to use Garlic Expressions vinaigrette instead of the lemon dressing they recommended and I added half a cup of chopped cucumber. If you know me, then you know I can rarely make a recipe without adding my own touch to it. So without further adieu I present to you the recipe for this delicious salad.
RED QUINOA SALAD RECIPE
1 pkg (7 oz) Food You Feel Good About Red Quinoa (Grocery Dept), cooked per pkg directions, chilled
1 pkg (12 oz) Food You Feel Good About Just Picked and Quickly Frozen Super-Sweet Corn, thawed
1 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 cup green onions, thinly sliced on the bias
2 plum tomatoes, 1/4-inch dice (about 1 cup)
2 avocados, peeled, pitted, cubed small
1/2 cup Food You Feel Good About Lemon Vinaigrette (Produce Dept)
1/2 tsp pepper and salt
Add cooked quinoa, corn, cilantro, green onions, and tomatoes to mixing bowl. Fold in avocados and dressing; mix until well-combined. Season with salt and pepper; serve.
Nutrition Info: Each serving (1 cup) contains 210 calories, 27 g carbohydrate, (4 g fiber), 5 g protein, 9 g fat, (1 g saturated fat), 0 mg cholesterol, and 240 mg sodium.
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