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Welcome to a recipe that brings the vibrant flavors of the Mediterranean right to your plate. Our Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is a refreshing, protein-packed dish that’s perfect for a light lunch, a side dish, or even a main meal. It’s filled with nutritious quinoa, crisp cucumbers, juicy tomatoes, briny olives, and creamy feta cheese, all tossed in a zesty lemon-herb dressing.
Each bite delivers a delicious balance of textures and flavors, capturing the sunny essence of Mediterranean cuisine. This salad is not only delicious but also incredibly healthy, full of vitamins, fiber, and protein. So, let’s get started on this exciting culinary journey to the Mediterranean coast!
For the Salad:
- 1 cup quinoa
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 cucumber, diced
- 2 medium tomatoes, diced
- 1/2 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and sliced
- 1/2 cup feta cheese, crumbled
- 1/4 cup red onion, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
For the Lemon-Herb Dressing:
- Juice of 1 large lemon
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- Salt and pepper to taste
Preparation of Quinoa:
- Start by rinsing the quinoa under cold water to remove any residual bitterness.
- In a medium saucepan, combine the quinoa and water. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Once boiling, reduce the heat to low, cover the saucepan, and let the quinoa simmer for about 15 minutes or until all the water is absorbed and the quinoa is tender.
- Remove the saucepan from the heat, fluff the quinoa with a fork, and let it cool before adding to the salad.
Assembly of Salad:
- In a large salad bowl, combine the cooled quinoa, diced cucumber, diced tomatoes, sliced olives, crumbled feta cheese, chopped red onion, and fresh parsley.
- Toss the ingredients gently to combine them well.
- In a small bowl, combine the fresh lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, minced garlic, dried oregano, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Whisk the ingredients together until the dressing is well mixed.
- Drizzle the dressing over the assembled salad and toss again to ensure all the ingredients are coated evenly.
Now your Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is ready to be enjoyed! This salad can be served immediately, or you can refrigerate it for an hour before serving to let the flavors meld together.
The Mediterranean Quinoa Salad is quite versatile when it comes to serving. It can be enjoyed as a standalone light meal, perfect for lunch or dinner. Alternatively, it can be served as a side dish with grilled fish or chicken for a complete Mediterranean-style meal.
For a more casual setting, you could even scoop it into lettuce wraps for a fun and healthy finger food. Lastly, a glass of white wine, such as a crisp Sauvignon Blanc or a light Pinot Grigio, pairs wonderfully with this salad.
If you have leftovers, the Mediterranean Quinoa Salad can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. It’s best to store the salad and dressing separately to keep the salad fresh and prevent it from becoming soggy. When you’re ready to eat, just give the dressing a quick stir and then toss it with the salad.
We hope you enjoy making and eating this Mediterranean Quinoa Salad as much as we do! It’s a refreshing, nutritious, and flavorful dish that brings the taste of the Mediterranean to your kitchen.
Whether you’re a seasoned cook or a beginner, this recipe is easy to follow and delivers a salad that is sure to impress. Don’t forget to share your salad creation with friends and family – they’re going to love it too! Happy cooking!