Sunday, November 7, 2010

Gluten Free Couscous(Quinoa) Salad

I know there has been a long lapse since my last post and being busy is a poor excuse, but it's the only one I have. So anywho! 

If you are gluten free like me and really miss couscous salad and/or Taboule for that matter, using Quinoa is a good fix on the situation. Even is you are not gluten free, Quinoa lends itself so well to both of these Mediterranean style salads that you will likely not know the difference. What is even more key to making a good couscous salad than the grain you use is the use of fresh herbs, namely mint and parsley, and what is so cool about making these is that you can improvise according to what you have on hand or to suit your particular mood at the time. So here is the recipe that I have been making recently, but feel free to modify to your own personal tastes.

4-6 cups cooked Quinoa(I make mine in a rice cooker)
1/2 cup minced fresh parsley(flat leaf is best)
1/4 cup minced fresh mint
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
1 medium red fresno chile, stemmed, seeded(de-ribbed if you're a wimp,) & minced
1/2 minced red bell pepper
1/4 cup minced red onion
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
1 persian cucumber, chopped
1 clove garlic, grated
1/2 cup dried pitted tart cherries(Montmorency are good)
1-2 Tbsp. Curry Powder
1/4 - 1/2 tsp Sea Salt
1/4 tsp Smoked Paprika
1/4 tsp Black Pepper
1/4 tsp Ground Cumin
1/4 cup EVOO
1/4 cup Fresh Lemon(or Lime) Juice

Toss all ingredients together in a large mixing bowl and refrigerate for an hour allowing flavors to marry. Toss again before serving. This is quick and simple to prepare and should stay fresh for three to four days(if it last that long.) Great as a quick snack, or as a side dish to soups, sandwiches, and grilled meats(like our Indonesian Shrimp Skewers.)
Enjoy, God bless, and as always keep it Saucey!!!!

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