What’s that? You have some cooked quinoa sitting in the fridge or some dry hanging out in the pantry, and you don’t know what to do with it? It’s your lucky day! Not only is there a previous recipe for a quinoa salad on this site, but I tried out a new one last night that’s equally refreshing. This one involved peas, basil, lemon, a great dressing that could pull double duty over greens; basically, everything that screams “summer.”
The recipe came from one of my bookmarked cooking sites, Food 52. I followed the recipe, only excluding the hemp seed and using 3 cups of cooked quinoa, so I won’t include the recipe below. It’s a simple side to pull together (even after a long-ish run and not getting home until 6:30, I was able to stir this up in about 30 minutes using cooked quinoa I already had on hand) and is incredibly flavorful. I admit, I was skeptical about the dressing at first, but it ended up pairing well with the quinoa, basil, and peas. The next time around I may include some lemon zest (just because I’m a sucker for citrus pops of flavor) and maybe some red pepper to provide some contrasting crunch. Other than that, this was the perfect complement to some mock tender steak that was begging to be used.
Another great summer side? Sauteed onion, squash, and zucchini. If you’ve ever grown squash or live in the South and leave your car unlocked only to come back and find squash in the front seat, you know how easily this vegetable can multiply. People become crazed after the excitement of the first squash of the season dissipates, and you start getting emails at work begging you to please, please take some squash home. There’s too much. Then you run into those same people in the hall, and they become like drug pushers, only the drugs are squash. We chose not to plant any squash in our garden this year, instead trying out some cantaloupe and preserving our sanity. Hopefully. This has turned out to be a wise decision since my parents are growing some monstrosities and are desperate to give away as much as they can because there are only so many ways you can fix squash and zucchini before you become incredibly tired of it. Luckily, I’m not bored with it yet, and sauteing squash with onions is still my favorite way to consume such a pervasive veggie. Just heat some olive oil in a saute pan (or a wok), throw in sliced onions and squash, season with salt and pepper, and cook for about 20 minutes (or until fork-tender).