I love fresh summer salads on hot days, for parties, for supper alone or with a loved one. They pair well with grilled proteins and dress up a meal that was so so before you got out the chilled bowl of pretty salad. There are a few salads I had to give up due to ingredients like bulgur wheat, farro, orzo pasta. Or so I thought. I now use quinoa and make a wonderful tabouli salad; the quinoa replaces the bulgur wheat very nicely. I particularly like the three color blend of quinoa for this purpose. You cook it on the stove top, cool it few minutes and it is ready to use. This quick to make and refreshing salad is very healthy. If you didn’t know it, quinoa comes from Peru and has a fair amount of protein in it; great for vegetarians. I like it’s refreshing flavors.
Angie’s GF Tabouli Salad
1 cup dry quinoa
2 cups water
½ tsp. salt
1/3 cup finely diced sweet onion
2/3 cup finely diced burpless cucumber
½ cup finely diced raw zucchini
1/3-1/2 finely diced orange bell pepper
1 large ripe tomato, diced
2 tbsp. finely chopped fresh mint
3-4 tbsp. EVOL of excellent quality
2-3 tbsp. red wine vinegar
½ a lemon; juiced and zested
Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
Directions: Mix the quinoa, water and salt in a medium saucepan, bring to a boil, cover tightly and cook 15 minutes. Uncover and cool.
Dump cooled quinoa in a large mixing bowl. Add the veggies and drizzle with the olive oil and then sprinkle with the vinegar and lemon juice. Add kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Chill at least 30 minutes before serving so flavors can blend and it chills. An hour is better. My amounts for the veggies are approximate and if you don’t like something; don’t use it. The mint is really what makes it taste perfect so try it before you decide to not use it. If you hate it; use fresh chopped parsley instead of mint. I also don’t measure the oil and vinegar; taste and add more if you want more. Don’t make a sopping wet salad; shouldn’t be any extra dressing in the bottom of the bowl. Put it in a nice serving dish before you bring it to the table. Chill the dish if it is a hot day.
Notes: I grate the lemon peel into the salad before I juice it, easiest. It keeps 2-3 days in the fridge; you could make it the day before if you need to. For that add the tomato and mint the day you are serving it. Try to get a beautiful tomato that is fully ripe and a tender zucchini makes the best quality salad here. Yes, raw zucchini; it doesn’t taste like that much but it adds something to the mix and your company will never know it isn’t cuke if you don’t tell them! Enjoy this naturally gluten free summer salad.