Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Tastiness - Greekish Quinoa a.k.a That Time When Quinoa Cheered Me

Who does this title think it's kidding?  This is just ONE of those times quinoa has cheered me.  I freaking love this stuff.  And I only call it "Greekish" because the dressing is the same I use when I make Greek salad.

Anywho...Today has been one of those days where things just didn't go right.  One of my students broke her arm at recess, a planned 5 mile run turned into the complete lack of a run, I realized that I STILL haven't printed invites for the kids' 2nd/5th birthday party when their birthdays are one month away, the grill ran out of gas as we were preparing dinner, and on and on and on.  Every have one of THOSE days?  The combination of these events (and more) was turning me into a grumpy, moody, b.

And then I started chopping up the veggies for this quinoa salad to go along with the hanger steaks I'd marinated all day.  Something about the colors just made me so happy.
Dressing whisked with red onion, cucumber, kalamata olives
As I kept chopping and adding to the bowl, I was more and more cheered.
With tomatoes and green pepper added
Once the quinoa and the feta were in, I was pretty much cured.  Or maybe just really, really hungry.
By this point, the grill was back in action, and we were ready to eat.  With a gorgeous Chicagoish day happening outside the kitchen window, I couldn't help but move dinner outdoors.  
The people at A-1 should really have paid me for this adorable ad.

A close up on the dinner - Hanger Steak and Asparagus with the Quinoa Goodness
B's Milk.  Yuck.
Bon Apetit
The day was saved.  The meal was delicious.  The company?  Perfect.  See?
Like a fat kid loves cake

Passionate about her quinoa stubble
Greekish Quinoa
**There is no reason to stick to this recipe exactly.  Adjust according to taste.  It makes A LOT as written.  

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano (I think.  I didn't actually measure it because at this point, I didn't know I was going to blog this recipe.) 
  • 2-3 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil (Again with the lack of measuring)
  • Juice of 3 lemons
  • Red Onion, diced small (1/2 is probably enough)
  • 1 English Cucumber, diced small
  • 1 jar Kalamata Olives, cut in half - I used these from Trader Joe's
  • Cherry or Grape Tomatoes, halved or quartered - I used these
  • 2 green peppers, diced small
  • 8 oz. (or more or less to taste) feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1 1/2 cups quinoa, rinsed (I used 1/2 cup of red quinoa and 1 cup of white quinoa)
  • 3 cups vegetable broth (This is what I had on hand.  Chicken broth or just water would work, too.)
  1. Bring broth to a boil.  Add quinoa and return to a boil.  Cover and simmer on low for 20-25 minutes, or until the water is absorbed.
  2. Add garlic, oregano, lemon juice and olive oil to large bowl and whisk together.
  3. Add veggies and mix well.
  4. When quinoa is finished, add it to the bowl.  Now it's decision time.  Do you want to serve this warm or cold?  It's great both ways. 
  5. If serving warm, add feta and serve.
  6. If serving cold, put in refrigerator until ready to serve, or at least until B gets back with the gas for the grill.  Just before serving, add feta.
  7. Enjoy!


  1. I was just telling my dude that it was time to start making fresh veggie salads with cukes, tomatoes, and parsley. Your daughter's quinoa stubble is the cutest!

    1. This salad would have been great without the quinoa, too *gasp!*

      L knows how to work a face full of food. Luckily, since she wears one nearly every meal. The child can make granola messy.

    2. NO! Why would you have anything without quinoa?!

  2. Of course quinoa cheered you up - it's not just hot, it's got substance too! And just when I didn't think L could be cooler, you post a picture of her covered in quinoa! Ah, she's a girl after Miss Anne's own heart.

    As for the recipe, this sounds yummy! I think I made something like this over the winter, but have been on such a Mexican food kick that things like feta cheese and cukes haven't made it into my shopping cart lately. And those hangar steaks look so good!

    1. Did I spell the steak wrong throughout the entire post? Whatevs. They were delicious, regardless of how they're spelled. Get some cukes and feta! It's warm outside, and such weather mandates them!

    2. I didn't actually notice :) When you're married to Bob, you know all the ins and outs of meats. It's his least boring trait.

  3. Mmmmnnnn. Quinoa is so hot right now.

    I make a similar salad with orzo. It never occurred to me to use quinoa. Duh. Genius.