Ohhhhh the beloved Mediterranean quinoa salad....quite possibly the only salad recipe you'll ever need.
Okay, that make be an exaggeration, but it's hands down the most popular salad at Alchemy.
I love how mainstream quinoa is becoming. It was only a few short years ago when I was pronouncing the funky little psuedo-grain "kee-no-ah" and wondering how to incorporate it into dishes. Now we put it in half of Alchemy's salads and no one even asks us to define it!
Even though I've forced quinoa against its will into blueberry peach crumbles, cheesy buffalo bites, strawberry oatmeal bars and pumpkin muffins oh my, let's face it...quinoa was made for salads. It's the bite of texture. It's the protein punch. It's the little balls of glory that take on whatever flavor you so choose.
If you're anything like me, you majorly over-ate on Turkey Day. That's what the holiday is for! This salad is a nice little detox because a) it's not an off-putting army-green smoothie and b) it makes raw vegetables taste like heaven. I'm honestly not one to snack on raw veggies that often. Even though they're more nutritious, I personally prefer them roasted. The beauty of this salad is that you're eating loads of raw tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, onions and parsley without even realizing it.
This salad is basically the answer to all of the questions.
For the dressing:
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ cup red wine vinegar
- ½ tbsp pure maple syrup
- ½ tbsp dried oregano
- ¾ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
For the salad:
- 1 ½ cups quinoa (uncooked)
- 2 ½ cups water
- 1 medium cucumber, de-seeded and chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- ½ large red onion, chopped
- 1 ½ cups cherry tomatoes, chopped
- ¾ cup feta cheese
- ¾ cup kalamata olives, pitted and halved
- 1 cup parsley, loosely packed and finely chopped
- Place quinoa and water in a medium pot. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low and simmer covered for about 15 minutes, or until quinoa is cooked through. Fluff with a fork.
- Whisk together the dressing ingredients and set aside.
- Place cucumber, pepper, red onion, tomatoes, feta, olives, and parsley in a large bowl. Add cooked quinoa, stirring to combine.
- Pour dressing over salad and toss to combine. Serve!