Monday, February 27, 2012

Meatless Monday - Spaceflight Salad?

Here's a nice light recipe for a Quinoa, Tomato and Garbanzo Bean Salad.  If you haven't tried or even heard of quinoa, it's a delicious and super healthy grain.

Trader Joe's Organic Tricolor Quinoa
According to Wikipedia:

Quinoa was of great nutritional importance in pre-Columbian Andean civilizations, secondary only to the potato, and was followed in importance by maize. In contemporary times, this crop has become highly appreciated for its nutritional value, as its protein content is very high (18%). Unlike wheat or rice (which are low in lysine), and like oats, quinoa contains a balanced set of essential amino acids for humans, making it a complete protein source. It is a good source of dietary fiber and phosphorus and is high in magnesium and iron. Quinoa is gluten-free and considered easy to digest. Because of all these characteristics, quinoa is being considered a possible crop in NASA's Controlled Ecological Life Support System for long-duration human occupied spaceflights.

If you're lucky, you'll have everything on hand like I did - actually I modified a recipe from so I wouldn't have to go to the store :).  Everyone enjoyed it, especially the kids which is always a bonus!

1 cup quinoa
2 cups (or 1-15 oz can) garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
1 tomato, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 small red onion, finely sliced
3 tablespoons lemon juice
4 teaspoons olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (original recipe called for parsley)

Using a fine mesh strainer, rinse quinoa under cold running water.  Prepare as directed (I used vegan broth instead of plain water for more flavor).

Once done, stir in the garbanzo beans, tomatoes, garlic, onion, cilantro (reserve some for garnish), lemon juice, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

Garbanzo beans, tomatoes, garlic and onions

Garnish with remaining cilantro and enjoy!

Quinoa, tomato and garbanzo bean salad

This salad was even more delicious the next day - I added some chopped avocado -- delicious!!

What's your favorite way to eat quinoa?

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  1. I prefer quinoa as a background grain - I find it doesn't stand up to being a main ingredient.

  2. This looks like a yummy recipe. I love quinoa! Thanks for sharing.

  3. I love quinoa! In fact I've been eyeing that very bag at TJs! I love it as a pilaf with all sorts of veggies, dried berries/seeds thrown in.
    I also baked quinoa cookies--those were interesting. : )

  4. Yum! gonna try that this week. I keep wanting to try quinoa as a breakfast cereal (hot) but have yet to do it.

  5. looks yummy I really need to start cooking with quinoa my cuz uses it all the time.


Have you tried this gear? Something similar you like better? Something I should try? Let me know by leaving a comment!

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