Hi everyone! I hope you all had a lovely Memorial Day weekend. I apparently caught a case of spring fever, which left me completely unable to do any schoolwork. I did, however, get a good hike in and hosted a last-minute Memorial Day barbecue at my apartment. I’m generally intimidated by the idea of “hostessing”. I feel that my apartment isn’t big enough, clean enough, etc., etc. And for all the cooking that I like to do, I still get extremely nervous about inviting others to eat at my table. Maybe that’s because I don’t actually have a real table for people to eat at (I told you my apartment was small). But this weekend I forced myself to overcome my fears and I invited a few friends over to grill with me and hang out on my patio. And to accompany the bratwursts and corn on the cob, I made a big quinoa and black bean salad.
Somehow, I knew this was just the thing for a Memorial Day get-together. It was easy, healthy, and, most importantly, delicious. I was happy to see that it was almost completely gone by the time my guests left.
The recipe is an amalgamation of a few similar dishes I found around the web (especially this one and this one). I modified based on what sounded good and what I thought my guests would like. This would be wonderful to take for picnics and potlucks all summer long.
Quinoa and Black Bean Salad
makes 6 servings
– 1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
– 2 cups water
– 1 can black beans, rinsed
– 1 avocado, diced
– 2 tomatoes, diced
– 1 10 oz. bag frozen corn, thawed
– 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
– 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
– juice from 1 lime
– 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
– 1 tsp salt
– 1 tsp garlic powder
– 1 tsp cumin
Start by cooking your quinoa. Place rinsed quinoa and water in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cover the pot for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to sit for another 5 minutes. If you have time, allow quinoa time to cool before adding other ingredients.
In a large bowl, mix together quinoa, black beans, avocado, tomato, and corn. You may add the cilantro now as well, if you would like. Some people dislike the taste of cilantro and so another option is to leave it on the side so that those who want it can sprinkle it on their salad.
Make the dressing. Mix together the olive oil, lime juice, balsamic vinegar, salt, garlic powder, and cumin. Pour over the salad and stir until well-incorporated. Store in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve.