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Avocado & Tomato Quinoa Salad

July 24, 2012

This is the time of year where few people want to be in their kitchen and heaven forbid you be tempted to turn on the oven. My ideal weekends would be spent outdoors with a backyard full of friends and the grill feeding us all. Unfortunately this summer has tested us a step further in that it is almost too hot to even bother with the grill and the concept of being outside altogether.

This dish is a perfect solution for those hot summer days. If you want to stay inside and enjoy a nice refreshing light meal, it’s there to comfort you. If you want a great side dish for your summer cookout – it’s ready to party alongside the best of your burgers and dogs. You could substitute most any summer veggie for the tomatoes and avocado… corn, zucchini, summer squash (ugh), cucumber… the list could go on. So make the most of your summer, and enjoy something cool, refreshing and (for the benefit of my wonderful sister) gluten-free!

Avocado & Tomato Quinoa

Servings: 4-6
Time: 20 minutes

1 cup dried quinoa
1 cup water
1 cup white wine
1 avocado
6 plum tomatoes or approx 1 pint of cherry tomatoes
2 cloves of garlic, finely minced
1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp red pepper flake
salt to taste

Add the quinoa, water & white wine to a small sauce pan and bring to a rolling boil. (note: check the instructions for your particular brand of quinoa… mine required 1 cup dry to 2 cups liquid, so adjust as necessary) Cover and let simmer until all liquid is absorbed – about 15-20 minutes. Transfer to a bowl or platter and allow to cool in the fridge until ready to serve. Chop the tomatoes into approx 1 inch pieces, removing any excess seedy liquid. Cut the avocado in the same size pieces, and toss together with the tomatoes in a bowl with garlic, lemon juice, cumin & red pepper.  When you are ready to serve, drizzle the quinoa with olive oil, add vegetables and mix gently as to not destroy the avocado. Season with salt and enjoy!

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