Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Quinoa Caprese Salad: A Taste of Summer

I was on Pinterest (I know, I know) and I found this delicious Quinoa Caprese Salad. Caprese means something that is prepared with fresh mozzarella, tomatoes, and basil leaves and drizzled with olive oil. For example a caprese sandwiches, pizza caprese and, in this case caprese salad.

But, I guess using that definition, mine really wasn't because instead of using mozzarella I used feta. I asked Dallas to get me the mozzarella, which he did, but then he was confused as he thought I was making my couscous salad which does call for feta...anyway. In the end, I used feta and it was

delicious. Here are some pics, the recipe and some changes I made it is, just cause. Oh, and some cute pics of us al fresco the night we had it.
 The cooked Quinoa/Bulgar.
 The kids "patiently" waiting for us to finish dinner.
 My hunk on the BBQ.  Always with his phone, of course! :)
 Ava took this goofy shot of me.  Good one for a 4 year old!
 The grape tomatoes.  Don't you just want to take a bite.
 The super fresh and fragrant basil.
Olive oil and the feta in the background.
The finished product.  So good.

-1/2C quinoa (I used a Quinoa/Bulgar Wheat blend as that is what I had on hand.  And I actually made about 1 cup uncooked and it was great)
-8 oz fresh mozerella (Again, I used Feta)
-1 carton grape tomatoes, halved
-fresh basil
-2T olive oil
-salt & pepper

1. In a medium sized pan, bring 1C water and 1/2C quinoa to a rolling boil. Reduce heat and simmer on LOW until all of the water is absorbed. This should take anywhere between 10 and 15 minutes. *Cooking your quinoa on low is extremely important. If you let it simmer on a hotter flame, the water will absorb too quickly and the quinoa will turn out hard!

2. Cool the cooked quinoa in the refrigerator for at least an hour before preparing the salad.  (I didn't really do the whole hour thing so the salad was a touch on the warm side, but because there were lots of gains in it, it was quite nice that way).

3. To prepare the salad, slice grape tomatoes in half [hot dog way] and cut the block of fresh mozzarella into bite size pieces. Mix together. Then, add the chopped basil and cooked quinoa and give the salad a toss. Next, drizzle on the olive oil and season with a little salt/pepper (to taste). Give your salad a final toss and serve cool or at room temperature.

We served ours with some corn and pork chops from the BBQ and it was divine. We sat outside, had some vino and it was a glorious night.  My father-in-law loved the salad so much he took a bunch of it in his lunch the next day.  I wonder what his friends at the mine had to say about Quinoa salad?

Bon Appetite!

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