Quinoa and Grilled Vegetable Salad

Right. Almost Tankini weather (actually a wetsuit would suffice). Even still,  we all want to look our best in our resort wear Ladies and Gents! Introducing………the new high-in-protein, low-in-fat, superfood…….Quinoa (pronounced keenwaaah)!! This delectable little salad is a great one after that pump class and with loads of fresh veg, a tangy lemon dressing and a smattering of high protein goat’s cheese, what more could you want? A nice glass of high-in-carbs Sav Blanc?  Life is all about balance, after all…….

Prep time:  15  Minutes               Cooking time:  20  Minutes              $  Low Budget

Serves 2

1 cup of white Quinoa*

11/2 cups of water

1 zucchini, halved and sliced diagonally

1 bunch of asparagus, woody bit trimmed and cut into thirds

1 punnet of grape tomatoes, roughly sliced

5 artichoke hearts, halved*

12 Kalamata Olives, halved

1/2 a red onion, thinly sliced

1/2 a cup of continental parsley, roughly chopped

1tbs of dill, finely chopped

50gm of creamy goats cheese

Juice of 1 lemon

1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil

1 small clove of garlic, finely diced

1 tsp of honey

Sea salt and cracked black pepper

Place the raw quinoa and water in a small saucepan and add a pinch of salt.  Bring the water to the boil, stirring occasionally.  Reduce to a very low simmer, pop the lid on and let it absorb the water  for approximately 12 minutes.  Turn the heat off and allow to sit for 5 minutes before fluffing up with a fork.

Heat a griddle pan or BBQ to a high heat.  Cook the zucchini and asparagus on both sides until you have nice grill marks (don’t add any oil, the natural sugars in the veg will help to achieve the grill marks).

In a large bowl, combine the quinoa, asparagus, zucchini, tomatoes, olives, onion, some of the parsley, the dill and artichokes. In another small bowl or jar, combine the garlic, lemon juice, olive oil and honey.  Season with salt and pepper and shake or whisk really well to combine.

Pour in the dressing and toss very gently to combine, so the artichokes stay intact.  Divide the salad between two serving plates and crumble over the goats cheese and the remaining parsley. Dig in! This would also make a great side to meat, fish or chicken……..

*Quinoa can be found in the health food section of the supermarket or health food shop.  I always buy the Artichokes in Brine which are in the sauces and pickle aisle!