Who’s with me on this one: Lunch can be a royal pain in the side. Like most women, I wear at least a dozen different hats in a day (mother, wife, maid, therapist, chef, party planner, church callings, accountant, nurse…etc) so taking a pause to indulge in a fabulous leisurely lunch isn’t always an option. I wish I lived in a country where two hour lunches were the norm, or maybe I just wish I had enough self-discipline to impliment that in my own home. But I strike out on both wishes, and even though I give my kids a balanced lunch where they’re sitting down and eating at least two or three courses, I’m not included in that picture. You’ll find me standing up serving and cleaning and multitasking.
Sound familiar to anyone?
So I have learned to rely on keeping a big bowl of a nutrition packed, filling, and satisfying salad that I make once and it lasts a few days. A pile of leaves wouldn’t do the trick either, not for the amount of running around that happens in a day (and the energy it takes to grow a baby-in-belly). Thank the Heavens that Quinoa has entered the American market and is a readily available product these days!
Quinoa is endlessly versatile and so much fun to play with. Today, because maybe you’re in a rush like me, and maybe because you want to simplify your lunches for the next couple of days, and also maybe because you want to be confident you’re getting a rounded nutritious meal in one bite, I’ll share with you my latest salad winner.
No need for a fanicified name. It’s just Quinoa with all the mixin’s.
- 1.5 cups quinoa
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup edamame beans
- 1 can black beans, rinsed & drained
- 1 cup corn
- 2 sliced avacados
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- ½ cup slivered almonds
- coriander seed
- walnut oil (other oils to be eaten raw like olive oil are great)
- salt and pepper
- Prepare Quinoa as instructed on the packaging. Different varieties have subtle differences. A basic rule I follow, because I find the texture most pleasing, is similar to rice — 1:2 ratio. I know it’s debatable, but I like this outcome. If adding salt or broth to the Quinoa, the ratio changes a bit, needing more liquid, so be aware of that.
- While the Quinoa is simmering, prepare the other ingredients. Dice the avocados and toss in some lemon juice. Drain and rinse the beans. De-pod the edamame if needed. I use frozen corn and leave it so, because the steaming hot Quinoa will bring it quickly up to room temp and it doesn’t turn mushy.
- Throw edamame, beans, corn and slivered almonds in a large bowl and empty the pot of Quinoa on top.
- Drizzle on top a couple tablespoons of walnut oil. Add teaspoon of coriander seed, and salt and pepper to taste. Don’t be shy on the salt, this calls for it!
- Mix everything together well. Add the avocados last.
- If I know this salad will last a few days, I only add one portion of avocado to my serving, and I’ll set aside the rest in a bowl with the lemon juice. This prevents the avocado from leaking into the salad, turning brown, and making the whole salad go bad to prematurely.
- Good both ways: warm the day of, and cold from the fridge!