Friday, July 29, 2016

Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad

A few weeks back the husband took the kids to his folks' house for the weekend (thanks, honey!), and I hosted a little reunion for my college girlfriends here in Seattle.

We talked until too late at night and then slept in. We were tourists at Pike Place Market and took in the sights of Seattle on a sunny summer day. We went to the beach and did some shopping. We missed our kids and our husbands, but at the same time we reveled in our girls-only time. And we ate. Oh, man, did we eat.

One of the meals we cooked included Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad. Maybe it was the company or the fact that I didn't spend the entire dinner chopping food into small pieces for the baby, but I couldn't stop thinking about this salad.

With a hearty helping of parsley and lemon, this salad reminded me of tabbouleh. But instead of bulgur wheat, I used quinoa for a gluten-free, protein-packed dish. The colorful veggies make it refreshing and healthy.

Whether it's for a girls' weekend, a barbecue, or just dinner with the family, Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad is perfect for your summer menu!

Let's get cooking!

P.S. If you have dietary restrictions, this recipe is low FODMAP in addition to being gluten free!

Gluten-Free Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad

2 cups water or broth
1 cup quinoa
Salt and pepper
Juice of 1 1/2 - 2 lemons*, divided
1 bunch parsley, chopped (about 1 cup)
1 English cucumber, quartered and sliced 1/4" thick
1 bell pepper, chopped into 1/2" pieces
11 ounces grape tomatoes, halved
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Combine water or broth and quinoa in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. (If you're using water, I recommend adding a hearty pinch of salt to help season the quinoa while it cooks.) Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring halfway through. Allow the quinoa to sit, covered, for 5 minutes then fluff with a fork. Pour juice of half a lemon over warm quinoa and season with salt and pepper to taste. Set cooked quinoa aside to cool while you prep the veggies.

Combine parsley, cucumber, bell pepper, and tomatoes in a large bowl. Stir in juice of 1 lemon and olive oil. Stir in cooked quinoa. Season to taste with salt and pepper. If you want a little more zip, add a bit more lemon juice. Serve at room temperature or store in the fridge until you're ready to serve.

*Sometimes after the salad sits in the fridge for a while, it dries out a little bit. If this happens, stir in juice from another 1/2 a lemon and a drizzle of olive oil.

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