Sesame Ginger Quinoa Salad

Sesame Ginger Quinoa Salad

I made this salad for the first time last summer while Miles was off surfing in Sri Lanka with his bros, and it was so good I literally ate it every meal.  The first time I made it I was inspired by another recipe I had come across, but since then I have made this so many times that I have altered it to become my own. The flavors get even better when it sits for a day or two, and it is a perfect cold salad packed with protein, veggies and the most delicious dressing of all time.

My secret for flavorful quinoa is to add the dressing while the grain is still warm. I think the quinoa absorbs much more flavor this way, and I like the texture better too (it is a little softer or something I think).  As always, I like my vegetables to outnumber the grain component in every dish, and this is no exception.

Sesame Ginger Quinoa Salad

Makes about enough for about 5 meal-sized bowls

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa, cooked (still warm)
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup rice vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp Sesame oil
  • 1 inch peeled fresh ginger
  • 2 cloves peeled garlic
  • 2 cups shredded carrot
  • 1.5 cup chopped snow peas
  • 1 cup blanched edamame (cooked as directed and then right into cold water)
  • 1/2 english cucumber, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup finely chopped cilantro
  • 4- 5 finely chopped green onions
  • toasted sesame seeds
  • avocado

Directions:

  1. Cook quinoa as directed (I think the absolute best way to do it is in the rice cooker).
  2. Meanwhile, in a food processor pulse soy sauce, vinegar, sesame oil, ginger and garlic until smooth.
  3. When quinoa is done pour it into a large mixing bowl and combine with the sesame ginger dressing (while it is still warm). There may be a little excess dressing but the quinoa will absorb it, and there will be plenty of veggies in there too.
  4. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  5. Add in cilantro and all veggies (besides the avocado),  and chill for at least 1 hour.
  6. Top each bowl with avocado (I use 1/2 of one, because they grow on trees out here… literally) and a sprinkle of sesame seeds. I don’t add the avocado with the the rest of the veggies because it will get brown and gross if you want to eat it tomorrow.

Hunter waiting for his dad to get home