Food & Drink Magazine

Quinoa Carrot Cilantro Salad

By The Hippie Nerd @thehippienerd
Quinoa Carrot Cilantro Salad
Hello, THN readers! I’m Yuri, aka ChefPandita, and I’ll be sharing somedelicious and healthy recipes with you every Thursday. What should we call these posts? Yummy Thursdays? Leave your suggestions in the commentsection below J.
I love baking and, at the same time, I have apassion for healthy eating (leaning towards vegetarianism). We all want to look good and as we growolder whatever we put in our mouths affect our wellbeing and appearance. Indulging is good and necessary, butunfortunately we can’t live on ice cream and Oreos…
I hope I can help you discover new ingredientsand flavors.  Eating healthy doesn’thave to be boring!
For today’s post, let’s talk about Quinoa!  Quinoa is an ingredient I use a lot inmy kitchen. You can find it atalmost every supermarket, as it’s easy to cook, nutritious and so fun to eat. Although it’s used as a grain, it’sactually a seed that’s been grown forever in South America.  It’s only been a few years since thisstaple has become popular all over the world!
Here are some interesting facts about thissuperfood:
·  Quinoa is gluten-free. ·  It’s a complete protein because it has all 9 amino acids (just like meator eggs).  This can’t be said aboutwheat, rice or legumes.·  Quinoa isalso rich in magnesium, riboflavin, zinc, vitamin E, selenium, manganese,tryptophan, copper, phosphorus, fiber, and lignans [phytonutrient shown toreduce the risk of heart disease as well as certain types of cancer].
I wouldn’t recommend eating quinoa as your only sourceof protein because it is a carbohydrate.I always mix it with different salad veggies [preferably raw] andmeasure the amount I use in my meals.
Moderation is key in everything we do in life (eating,drinking, exercising, shopping!) so keep that in mind when choosing what toeat. Your body needs vitamins,minerals and nutrients that can be obtained with a balanced diet, so aim foreating all kinds of foods.  Thinkof it like eating the rainbow: greens, reds, and orange veggies are all goodfor you!
Try this delicious quinoa salad, straight frommy own kitchen!Quinoa Carrot Cilantro Salad 
QuinoaCarrot Cilantro SaladIngredients:
·  ¼ cup red, white, blackquinoa (they’re all the same, I like to mix red and white)·  1 cup water·  Raw carrot, peeled andchopped/shredded (however you like it best)·  Chopped fresh cilantro (2tablespoons or to taste)·  2 teaspoons lime or lemonjuice·  1 tablespoon extra virginolive oil·  Fine sea salt or koshersalt·  2 cups fresh organic babyspinach
1.   Put water in a saucepan and while it boils, placequinoa in a fine mesh sieve and rinse under running water. 2.   Once the water is boiling, add the rinsed quinoa.  After 10 minutes, watch it closely and,as soon as a white string appears (it’s like a curly white tail that pops outof each seed), taste it because you want it “al dente”, not mushy. 3.   Strain cooked quinoa and let cool.4.   Meanwhile, start prepping the carrot and cilantro. Iuse a julienne mandoline to cut the carrot.  They are time savers and you can find them at any cookingstore or on Washand chop the cilantro and put it in a bowl with the chopped/shredded carrot.5.   Mix quinoa, carrot, cilantro and season with lime/lemonjuice, olive oil and salt. 6.   Put the baby spinach in a salad plate and serve thequinoa on top.
Andthis is how cooked quinoa should look like:Quinoa Carrot Cilantro Salad
I make this salad all the time for lunch or dinner.You can also serve it with agrilled chicken breast or fish fillet. Protein is as important as green veggies J, so I often drink vegan protein shakes after workingout.
If you haven’t tried quinoa, get a box next timeyou’re at the supermarket and let me know if you like it… You can connect withme on Twitter,Facebook or visit my blog.
Have a great weekend and see you all nextThursday!
Photography: ChefPanditaAuthor: ChefPanditaEditor: Jenny Perusek
*panda hugs*

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