Quinoa, Roasted Beet and Walnut Salad

Posted October 30th, 2011 in Grains, Recipes by Rebecca Lane

Quinoa, Roasted Beet and Walnut Salad - spring version!

This is my favourite salad – originally from Ricki’s Kitchen (http://www.dietdessertndogs.com/)- but I’ve made it so many times now that it has evolved (or devolved as the case may be). Anyway I found out that it wasn’t available on my site when I tried to find it for @SandiKrakowski a twitter friend. Imagine my embarrassment!

Quinoa, Roasted Beet and Walnut Salad

 The brilliant crimson of roasted beets lends a gorgeous hue to this mineral- and protein-rich salad. Roasting the beets brings out their true sweetness and tender texture in contrast to the chewy quinoa and crunchy walnuts.

3-4 medium beets, washed and trimmed (do not peel)
1 cup dry quinoa
2 cups water
½ cup walnuts, lightly roasted and cooled (or you can use the spicy pecan recipe here)
2-3 cloves garlic, minced or grated
Grated rind of one lemon
Juice of one lemon (about ¼ cup)
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp. Maple syrup
1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
Pepper to taste

  1. Preheat oven to 425F. Wrap beets in foil and bake until extremely tender, about 45 minutes to 1 hour. Let cool, then slip off the skins and dice into 2 cm cubes. Set aside.
  2. Bring water to boil in a small heavy saucepan. Rinse quinoa well and add to water. Return to boil, then reduce heat to low and cover. Allow to simmer, untouched, for 25 minutes, then check to see if water has been absorbed. If not, continue simmering until all water is absorbed, then uncover and allow to cool. (If you are in a hurry, you can turn the hot quinoa into a glass bowl at this point and place it in the fridge for about 30 minutes).
  3. In a nonstick frypan, heat oil and add garlic and lemon rind. Cook and stir for 2 minutes, then add balsamic vinegar, lemon juice and maple syrup. Remove from heat.
  4. Add beets to cooled quinoa. Break walnuts into pieces and add to the bowl. Pour dressing over and toss well until quinoa becomes pink. Add cilantro and combine well. Season to taste with pepper. This salad is even better the second day, after flavours meld.

Serves 4

Day 27 – The Joy of Vegetables

Posted April 28th, 2011 in Gluten-Free Flours, Grains by Rebecca Lane

I have a theory, and I may be thrown under a moving bus for this, so hang on. As a society, we focus too much on eating grains. At Nature’s Emporium we have constant requests for how to heal stomach problems – like colitis, Crohn’s, Celiac disease, IBS – as well as inflammatory diseases – like arthritis, asthma, cancer. Everybody wants to know about Gluten-Free Diets.

 Here’s my theory: the solution is not to find out about which grains are Gluten-Free, but to change the focus from a grain-centered diet, to a vegetable and fruit-centered diet. Yes, we do need the complex carbohydrates that grains offer our diet. As a result, learning about which grains are gluten-free is important, and I’ll list them below for you in a minute. But when we start telling ourselves and the people around us that we are “on a Gluten-Free Diet” we’re out of focus!

From my quick research online, and my own knowledge and experience, there are 9 gluten-free grains:

  • Rice – white, wild or brown (white rice has been milled – that is the husk, bran and germ have been removed. Since these are where most of the nutrients in a grain are found, white rice has little nutritional value. There’s lots more information about rice on the Lundberg  site, as well as the Livestrong  site.)
  • Millet
  • Quinoa – white and brown (or red)
  • Corn (though it’s really a vegetable)
  • Teff
  • Amaranth
  • Buckwheat – includes Kasha which is roasted Buckwheat
  • Montina – otherwise known as Indian rice grass
  • Sorghum