Quinoa salad with zucchini,
poblano and avocado
Makes 2 to 3 servings
2/3 cup dried quinoa
1 cup water
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 small zucchini, diced
1 poblano pepper, seeded and diced (may substitute green bell pepper)
1/4 cup minced chives (may substitute scallion greens)
Flesh of 1 Hass avocado, cut into 1-inch chunks
Notes: Because you want the quinoa at room temperature to make the salad, it’s a good idea to cook it ahead of time. Alternatively, you can spread it out on a plate to cool after it has cooked and briefly rested, or use leftover quinoa. To use leftover grains, substitute 2 1/2 cups in place of the 2/3 cup dry listed here. For add-in and swap-out ideas, see the variations, below.
Make ahead: The quinoa can be cooked two days in advance and dressed one day in advance. The vegetables and chives can be prepared a day in advance and held on top of the quinoa; mix in before serving. Cut the avocado just before serving to avoid browning.
1. Rinse and drain the quinoa, then place in a small, heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid. Add the water; bring to a boil over high heat, then immediately cover and reduce the heat to low. Cook for 20 minutes, until the quinoa is fluffy and all the water has been absorbed. Allow to cool in the pot. (Alternatively, let it rest in the pot for 15 minutes, then spread the quinoa on a large plate or baking sheet to cool.)
2. Dissolve the salt in the lemon juice in a liquid measuring cup, then add the black pepper and oil, whisking to form an emulsified dressing.
3. Combine the cooled quinoa in a bowl with the zucchini, poblano, two tablespoons of the chives and the dressing, and fold well to combine. Top with the avocado and remaining chives.
Nutrition per serving (based on 3): 310 calories, 7 g protein, 31 g carbohydrates, 19 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 360 mg sodium, 6 g dietary fiber, 1 g sugar