We found red quinoa on sale for less than $3 a pound at a bulk organic food outlet. It was a bargain considering a pack of eight 16 oz pouches can cost about $40. If you soak it for a few minutes before boiling, it cooks faster and swells up and 1 cup of uncooked quinoa is enough for two people. I really like its mild nutty flavor that goes well with corn and cilantro and a light vinegar dressing. Here is a yummy, nutritious and easy side dish that can be prepared ahead of time and served at room temperature.
Red Quinoa Corn Salad1 cup red quinoa
2 cups water
1/4 cup drained, sweet corn kernels (add more if you wish)
finely chopped cilantro
about 1 T seasoned rice vinegar* (you can adjust the acidity to taste)
Soak red quinoa for about 10 minutes in 2 cups water. Place quinoa in a fine-mesh strainer and rinse it in running water. This step removes saponins (a mild laxative) and makes it even more digestible. Pre-rinsed quinoa is available too if you prefer to skip this step. Cook quinoa in a rice cooker with 2 cups water or cook covered in a pot at a low simmer for 15-20 minutes till nearly all the water is absorbed and the cooked germ looks like a tiny curl separating from the red seed coat and the cooked "grain". Fluff up the quinoa with a fork and place in a bowl. Add drained sweet corn kernels, cilantro and seasoned rice vinegar. Serve and enjoy!
*One time, we tried balsamic vinegar but it tended to overpower the flavors.
This post is part of this weeks Simple Lives Thursday.