recipe: quinoa salads with asian flavors

I have a love affair (my husband might say problem) with Asian flavors. Like love. I could get down with some green curry, veggie sushi, dosa or pho And my love for quinoa has just exploded in the last few years. I use it in place of rice and pasta any chance I get. Recently, for lunch I started making quinoa bowls. They are quick, easy and delicious and nutritious and can be made ahead of time so you can grab and go for lunch, even dinner. Filling and flavorful, here are three Asian inspired recipes that I love. All of these recipes are made with one cup of quinoa. Let me know what you think and enjoy!

Spicy Quinoa Salad with Dumplings

• ¾ cup cooked, shelled edamame
• ½ cup Persian cucumber, cut into small pieces
• ½ serrano chili, sliced thinly
• 1 ½ tablespoons of soy sauce
• a squirt or three of Sriracha or your favorite Asian hot sauce
• 1 tablespoon toasted black sesame seeds
• 12 cooked veggie (or chicken dumplings) – these were bought at Trader Joes and seared then steamed

1. Combine all ingredients together and add dumplings ( I add 3 or four) on top of each serving of quinoa salad with an extra drizzle of soy sauce and hot sauce
2. Can be eaten warm, room temp or cold. So good!

Thai Style Quinoa Salad

• 2 heads romaine, thinly sliced
• 1 red pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
• 1 large carrot, julienned
• 1 small zucchini, julienned
• 1 small handful bean sprouts
• 1/2 small serrano or Thai chili, thinly sliced
• 1 cup cooked quinoa
• 1/4 cup chopped, toasted cashews
• small handful of Thai basil, thinly cut

• 2 tablespoons peanut butter
• 1 tablespoon Sriracha sauce
• 1 teaspoon soy sauce
• 1 teaspoon gluten-free tamari
• 1 teaspoon sesame oil
• 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
• ½ lime juice
• 2 – 3 tablespoons water (or more if needed)

1. Place vegetables into a large salad or mixing bowl
2. In a small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients. Pour dressing over veggies and toss to coat
3. Transfer to two plates, add ½ of the quinoa and ½ the cashews to each plate. Top with basil
4. Serve immediately and warm

Curried Quinoa Salad with Spinach + Almonds

• 3 cups cooked quinoa
• 3/4 cups chopped onion
• 2 cloves garlic, minced
• 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
• 3 tablespoons raisins
• 3 tablespoons water
• 1 teaspoon pure cane sugar/agave nectar
• 2 teaspoons ground cumin
• 1 teaspoon turmeric
• ½ teaspoon paprika
• ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
• ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
• 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
• 1 pinch or more (depending on how hot you like it!) ground cayenne pepper
• 3 tablespoons sliced, toasted almonds
• 1 handful fresh baby spinach
• ¼ cup finely chopped fresh cilantro

1. In a large frying pan, heat olive oil and sauté chopped onions with garlic on medium high heat and until onions are nearly transparent
2. Next, add raisins, water, half of the cooked quinoa and all seasonings – gently stir until everything is well-incorporated
3. Add remaining half of the cooked quinoa along with spinach
4. When spinach has wilted down a bit, add in the cilantro and almonds
5. Remove from heat and serve

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