Saturday, May 12, 2012

Quinoa Salad on a Bed of Kale

I have this weird habit of looking up vacation homes in faraway countries. Please tell me I'm not the only one who does this. It's just so much fun to pretend I have enough money to buy a house on every continent!

So far, I've picked out gigantic castle-like mansions in Australia, Germany, Greece, and New Zealand. Brazil is next on my list, and since I can't decide on a country in Asia, I'll just have to "buy" a house in all of them!

Don't judge.

On a completely unrelated note, I made this for you. It's a delicious quinoa salad hugged by kale. Don't you want to be hugged by kale? That just sounds so comfy! Or maybe just plain weird.

This salad isn't weird, though! It's wonderful! Did I also mention it's completely vegan and gluten-free? Yeah. It totally is.

You know what's really cool about it? It's so versatile! You can add any veggies (or meat, if that suits you) that you'd like. This version includes onions, celery, and carrots, but you can add anything you want. Green peppers and asparagus are also great choices.

For added protein, I stuck some tofu in there. It's quite tasty, if I do say so myself. Here's the recipe!

Quinoa Salad on a Bed of Kale
{vegan and gluten-free}
Makes 2 servings (or 1 big serving)
  • 1/2 C uncooked quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 1/2 C water
  • 1 Tbs vegetable oil
  • 1 stalk of celery, chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1/4 C yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/2 package extra firm tofu, diced into cubes
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp ground cayenne
  • a few pinches of freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbs low-sodium Tamari (gluten-free soy sauce)
  • 1 stalk of kale, leaves removed and rinsed
  • dried thyme, for garnish (optional)
1. Add the quinoa and water to a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat and simmer for about 15 minutes, until the water is absorbed and the quinoa has sprouted.
2. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, carrot, and diced tofu. Cook, stirring often, until the vegetables are tender and the tofu is a nice golden brown. 
3. When the veggies are about done, add the salt, nutmeg, garlic, cayenne, and pepper. Stir a few times to distribute the spices. 
4. Add the skillet contents to the quinoa and mix. Add the Tamari and stir to combine. Arrange the kale leaves on a plate. Top with quinoa mix and a few sprinkles of dried thyme. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts (per serving): 381 calories; 16.4g fat; 0mg cholesterol; 966mg sodium; 43g carbs; 5.1g dietary fiber; 4g sugar; 20g protein; 563mg vitamin A; 45mg vitamin C; 303mg calcium; 7.3mg iron

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