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Colleen's Favorite Quinoa Salad

Colleen's Favorite Quinoa Salad

From Marla:
Today we have a recipe from one of my favorite people I’ve never met, Colleen Orozco. I love Colleen’s sassy attitude, her unapologetic self-confidence, her colorfully streaked hair, her beautiful food and garden photography, and her love for all animals, especially the bunnies who are nearest in her heart. I am proud to have Colleen as our first guest contributor. Thanks, Colleen, for all you do and for sharing your beautiful recipe. And now, doll, take it away.

From Colleen: “This is my favorite way to make quinoa, especially in the summer. It will keep for days in the fridge for quick lunches and dinners! Excellent potluck item as well. It's gluten-free, soy-free, and made with only whole food ingredients. With easy-to-buy grains and beans in bulk, it's budget-friendly too. More importantly it's delicious, so it's sure to please your belly!

My favorite rescue is Kind Heart Rescue, run by Jody Caizza in Cream Ridge, NJ. Jody rescues bunnies from abusive homes, feral conditions, even illegal slaughterhouse and breeding situations. There isn't a bunny she hasn't gone out of her way to help.

I've adopted several bunnies through Kind Heart Rescue, including my big girl, "Bunny". Dudley and Bunny say thank you for being vegan and showing kindness to non human animals!”

Colleen's Favorite Quinoa Salad

2 cups quinoa (uncooked)
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained (try to get the lower sodium)
2-3 corn on the cob (if you like. I often skip this if I am watching sugars)
Chopped scallions or red onion (about 1/4 to 1/2 cup, however much you want)
Handful of cilantro, washed well and chopped (1/4 cup or so)
Red or green bell pepper, finely diced
Jalapeno, minced (Optional)
1/4 to 1/2 cup of pumpkin seeds, toasted in dry frying pan until toasty and puffed.


1/3 cup lime juice
1/4 cup or less of olive oil
Cumin (1tsp - or more)
Salt (to taste)

1. Cook the quinoa (you can even do this a day or two ahead of time):

RINSE the quinoa VERY WELL. Quinoa has a natural soapy like film over the grain that will make the grain taste very bitter if you don;t rinse it off well first. Do not skip this step

Bring 3 cups of water to a boil, add 2 cups quinoa, reduce heat to lowest setting, and simmer for 15 minutes (check after 10 or so). The quinoa will be fluffy, and the water should be all gone, similar to preparing rice or couscous.

Set aside to cool, or put in fridge if making ahead.

2. If you're adding corn (and in summer in Jersey, corn is fabulous!), boil the corn cobs until done (usually 8 minutes or so), then when cool enough to handle, cut the niblets free from the cob.

3. Mix the dressing together, taste and adjust seasonings if you like, and add to the cooled quinoa. You can always make and add more dressing if you feel it needs it.

4. Mix in the diced peppers, onion, corn, cilantro, black peppers, and pumpkin seeds.

Refrigerate for at least an hour or more before serving.

5. Feel good for eating something yummy and healthy.

2013, 2014, Vegan Street

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