Saturday, June 23, 2012

Where to start..... (Quinoa salad)

I've got a lot of posts lurking in me!  There is one for the Olbrich gardens in Madison, my trip to Eden Prairie, an elf door, some yummy foods, oh my goodness, lots of things!!

I have had a really good June so far, so many little things I have done and seen.  People I have visited and talked to ....  I am wallowing in the joys of summer.  I want to enjoy some time at home now, I have a lot of work to do around the house, but don't want to spend my days stuck in here.  So, I am trying to strike a balance of doing useful things and doing joyful things.... and doing healthy things.  Today, I went for a 4 mile run, edited a boatload of pictures, cleaned up my hallway and made the piano accessible.  woo hoo!  Plus I made a nice quinoa salad for myself- so that is where I am going to start!

I have some time now, and since I have been eating vegetarian for the past 2 months I need to figure out some things to make for myself.  While in the Twin Cities, I went to a Whole Foods Store (for the first time ever) with a "Loseit" friend of mine and we bought a few salads for lunch after a nice walk around Lake Harriet.  There were a badillion vegetarian choices and it turns out that Whole Foods posts their recipes online!  Which is awesome, and I will make something from that website soon.  The point is that I was inspired to go online and search for some salad recipes and found a bunch that I posted to Pinterest.

I use Pinterest as a way to save things that I find online.  I am trying not to save the most sweet, decadent sounding things found on the face of the earth, I am trying to stay in the mostly healthy mode. I found this and adapted it to some of the things I had on hand and for my tastes at the moment.

Grilled Zucchini Greek Style Quinoa Salad

I happened to have zucchini on hand, and a friend of mine had just told me about Greek seasoning, which I had picked up last week.  So, this recipe was a good place to start.  I cut up some red peppers and zucchini, rubbed them with a little olive oil and sprinkled with Cavender's Greek seasoning.  I put them on my electric grill- unfortunately had a couple of them fall through the grate (grr) but managed to save the vast majority of the veggies!

Grilling the veggies

Meanwhile, I had started the cooking process for the quinoa! Our local supermarket has the kind of quinoa that you do not have to rinse first, it is prerinsed.  Yay.  I love quinoa, it reminds me of brown rice and is so easy to make and so good.

While those were all cooking I cut up tomatoes, added the olives, feta and chopped celery and mixed them with some light balsamic vinaigrette, with an extra splash of balsamic!

Ingredients for fabulosity

After the veggies were lightly grilled, I cut them into pieces and added them to the vinaigrette mixture, and chilled the whole thing for a short time.  I also took a serving of finished quinoa and chilled it as well.  I know I should have made the whole thing earlier, but hey!  I didn't feel like it before- I was cleaning!  OK??!!

The "Greek" zucchini salad


1 medium zucchini
1 red pepper
Cavender Greek seasoning (or any Greek seasoning)
Olive oil

feta cheese (I used black pepper flavor)
cherry tomatoes
Balsamic vinaigrette
Balsamic vinegar


Cook Quinoa according to directions.  I make extra to have on hand.

Rub cut peppers and zucchini with olive oil and sprinkle with Greek seasoning.  Lightly grill, flip veggies, grill some more.  Until the veggies are to the consistency you like.  Cut into bite size pieces.

Mix you choice of ingredients for the salad- I used olives, celery, feta, tomatoes....  cucumbers bother my stomach, so I don't use them.  They would be great in this though!!  Marinate for a short time in vinaigrette.  I used balsamic, because I luuuuuuuuuv it, but you might prefer a more traditional one.  It would be a little more tart, which is fabulous, but I had this on hand and it was divine.

I spooned some quinoa in a bowl, stuck it in the frig to chill and then topped it off a little later with a couple scoops of salad.  YUM!!

Approximately 400 calories using about 3/4 cup quinoa.

THIS was good!  I would like it with a more tart Italian dressing or I might make my own next time.

While I like the simple food I usually eat, this kind of thing makes me very happy!  You might say it gives me a lot of joy!

***  I always think of my favorite friend/food blogger when I make healthy things like this!  A shout out to my buddy Tanya at The Sunday Baker- you girl, are a big inspiration for me!  Her blog is so worth checking out!!

1 comment:

  1. Oh yeah, that sounds good. Thanks for sharing!
    'love & hugs from afar'