Keen-WoW

Healthy food should not only look appetizing but taste good, too.  I recently had lunch with a good friend and while I downed a lunch special portion of delicious prawns in black bean sauce,she chose a healthier option of a Quinoa bowl. Delivered straight to her with loads of vegetables and tossed in a fragrant sesame-ginger dressing, we both agreed that it looked and smelled delicious.  But after her first forkful, her facial expression said it all regarding the taste. I didn’t feel bad when I told her to spoon some of my black bean sauce in her not so Keen-WoW lunch bowl.

It’s really simple – everything you cook needs to be seasoned!  Especially when cooking rice, grains and pseudo-grains like quinoa.  We do food an unspeakable injustice by under-seasoning or not at all. When I make quinoa salads at home, I don’t only rely on the flavor from the vegetables, fruits, or meat that I pair with it.  The quinoa is cooked with salt and the use of bold, well-made dressings to enhance the flavor of the quinoa and really brings the whole meal together nicely.

Apple and Currant Quinoa Salad with a Curry Dressing and Stir Fried Vegetables

This recipe makes enough salad for a week so that you won’t be tempted to order prawns in black bean sauce for lunch.  And I enjoy prepping vegetables but if you would rather save your manicure, Wholefoods sells vegetables that have been julienned already.

Curry Dressing

1 tsp. of dry mustard
1 heaping Tbsp. of good curry powder
3 tsp. of honey
1 lemon, juiced
1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
½ tsp. of black pepper
½ tsp. of kosher salt
¼ cup olive oil

Whisk together honey, dry mustard, curry powder, vinegar, and lemon juice in a bowl.  Season with salt and pepper. Whisking constantly, pour in the oil in a slow, steady stream; whisk until dressing is emulsified.

Quinoa

2 cups of washed quinoa
1 tsp. of salt
1 cup of cubed apples
½ cup currants
½ cup of chopped parsley

Bring 3 1/3 cups of salted water to boil in a medium saucepan.  Stir in the washed quinoa, and return to a boil.  Cover the pan and reduce heat.  Simmer until quinoa is tender but still chewy (about 20 minutes).  Take the quinoa out of the pan and place in a dish. Fluff quinoa with a fork and let cool before adding the apples, currants, parsley and curry dressing.

Quick Stir Fried Vegetables

Julienne all vegetables except the spinach and garlic.
1 orange bell pepper
1 red bell pepper
1 small carrot
2 stalks of green onion
½ large onion
3 slices of ginger
2 cloves of garlic, sliced 1
1 handful of spinach
Salt and black pepper
Olive oil

On high heat, add enough olive oil to coat the bottom of a sauté pan.  Once hot, add the onions, garlic, and ginger.  Stir quickly and cook for about 5 seconds.  Add the rest of the julienned vegetables to the pan, season with a teaspoon each of salt and pepper.  Stir the veggies as they cook for about 5 minutes.  Turn the heat off before adding the spinach, it will wilt nicely with the heat from the cooked vegetables.

Pour vegetables over the quinoa and Enjoy!

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