So...I'll take a moment to promote my cousin Kelley's new hippie...I mean vegan...blog. You can find it here.
Here is her recipe for Quinoa with Asparagus, Dates and Orange. I think I've had it before. And, it was great. Even if I haven't had it, I'm sure it's great. Kelley's a pretty good cook.
I can't make this. First of all...I don't even know what a Quinoa is much less how to "blanch" one.
1 teaspoon canola oil
1/2 cup white onion
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
1 small can mandarin orange slices (drained)
1/2 cup sweet and spicy pecans from Trader Joes
2T minced red onion
1 bunch asparagus, blanched, chilled and cut into 2 inch pieces
1 jalapeño pepper, diced
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon extravirgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 garlic clove
2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
1) Blanch asparagus. Cool rapidly and cut into 2 inch pieces. Set aside.
2) To prepare Quinoa, heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. (The original recipe called for olive oil, however olive oil may release carcinogens when cooked at a high temperature so I choose Canola oil) Add onion to pan; sauté about 2 minutes. Add quinoa to pan; sauté 5 minutes. Add water and salt to pan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 15 minutes.
3) While Quinoa cooks, prepare dressing. Combine juice and next 4 ingredients, mix well by hand or in a food processor.
4) When your Quinoa is done cooking for 15 minutes Remove from heat; let stand 10 minutes more. Transfer to large bowl. Add orange and next 5 ingredients (through jalapeño); toss gently to combine. If bringing this on a picnic keep ingredients separate and assemble right before eating - otherwise your nuts go soggy.
5) Garnish with mint sprigs - they look pretty and are delicious, I use lots of them, and lemon wedges. Serve at room temperature.
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