Spring is in full swing here in Atlanta, the trees are brimming with new bright green leaves and spring flowers are everywhere! So what better to accompany these warmer days than a really clean tasting quinoa salad? I have been looking for ways to up my iron and quinoa is stellar in everyway so naturally I look to it to give me lots of good nutrition.
- Quinoa is a good source of iron, which is essential in the production of red blood cells, and therefore the supply of oxygen to the body.
- However, it should be noted that the iron in quinoa, much like the iron in all non animal sources, is a “non heme iron”. The upshot of this is that this type of iron is not as easily absorbed by your body as heme iron is.
- To increase absorption, eat your quinoa with a food containing heme iron, such as meat.
- Since I am eating quinoa as an alternative to meat be sure to include other high Vitamin C ingredients that will help with iron absorbtion such as tomatoes, citrus, or bell peppers. A fruit-based dessert made from a high vitamin C food such as papaya or mango is a good option too.
This salad is really yummy and I found that I can’t stop eating it, my kids really liked it too, minus the feta I feel stronger already!
|Spring Quinoa Salad|
- 1 c. quinoa, uncooked
- 1 c. vegetable broth, low sodium
- 1 c. water
- 1/3 c. Italian parsley, chopped
- 2 lg. celery stalks, minced
- 1/2 lg. cucumber, peeled, seeded and diced
- 6 radish, sliced into matchsticks
- 1/4 c. cranberries, dehydrated
- 1/4 c. red onion, minced
- 1/4 c. pecans, toasted and chopped
- 1/4 c. feta, crumbled (optional)
- 3 T. extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 lg. lemon, juiced
- 1/8 t. kosher salt
- Freshly ground pepper
- In a heavy duty medium saucepan, over medium/high heat dry toast the quinoa for a minute or two. Be sure to swirl the pan to avoid burning and to ensure even toasting. It will sound like popcorn popping and smell like it is toasting – that is what you want. It deepens the flavor.
- Add the broth and water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until all water is absorbed.
- Prepare the rest of the ingredients and add to cooled quinoa.
- Taste to check seasonings and serve at room temperature or chilled.
This salad can be served alongside grilled chicken or fish, by itself or on top of a bed of spinach or mixed greens for a light lunch or dinner.