Sunday, April 8, 2012

Mezze Quinoa Salad with Lentils

Last week was really rough. I messed up an important talk, had something rather sad happen in the context of my dissertation, barely slept, and let it all send me into a deeply anxious tailspin. None of this was aided by the fact that besides that delicious thai soup I really didn't eat anything besides rice cakes, lemon cake, chocolate, popcorn, pineapple, and coffee. Fail.

After recovering over the weekend with help from my sweet P, who made me fresh carrot juice and took me out for a lovely birthday dinner on Saturday, I'm hoping this week can go better. And I'll be well-armed with a delicious mezze quinoa salad with lentils to help with that whole nutrition thing.

This is basically my version of tabbouleh (gluten-free), beefed up with lentils. So tasty, so healthy.

1.5 cups dried quinoa
1/2 to 1 cup cooked lentils
1 shallot
1 bunch green onions
3 cloves garlic
1 jalapeno, de-seeded
1 container grape or baby heirloom tomatoes
3 lemons
Red Pepper flakes
Black Pepper

To Make
Cook quinoa and lentils. I actually used pre-cooked lentils that I bought on sale at Safeway. Yes that is embarrassing, but it's also the truth. I cook quinoa with equal parts water over medium-high, with a glug of olive oil added in. You are supposed to soak and rinse it beforehand, but I never do and I have never tasted anything off. Up to you!

Meanwhile, thinly slice your shallots and add them to a big bowl. Squeeze the juice of all 3 lemons over the shallots and add a generous pinch of salt and another pinch of pepper. Let marinade. Chop your garlic, add to bowl. Clean and slice your jalapeno, add to bowl. Thinly slice your green onions, add to...ok you get it. Finish up with the tomatoes, the parsley, and the cilantro. Mix all together with quinoa and lentils, and add cumin, salt, and pepper to taste.

Serve with feta crumbled on top. I scooped it up with some delicious gluten-free crackers.

Considerations for food allergies and ethics: This is gluten-free, vegetarian, and unless you serve it with feta, vegan.

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