A couple of days ago I cooked a decent amount of quinoa and have been using it in several different forms to create different meals. I had some for breakfast with some yogurt, dried fruit & nuts, made a couple random salads with it, and even incorporated it into a makeshift curry dish that I’ll have to post at some point (it was super tasty!). Today I was down to the last cup and a half or so, and though it would have been fun to do something a bit more elaborate with it, I thought I’d stick to something light & simple that I could enjoy for lunch.
To make this I used my last few mushrooms ($1.69 for the usual 8 oz. package at Trader Joe’s! Gotta love that!) and my favorite combo to put on almost anything, tomatoes & scallions. Maybe it’s because I grew up eating a lot of crisp salads with tomatoes & scallions (aka green onions, spring onions, etc.), but I find that the two bring a great fresh flavor to almost anything savory. Though I love all onions and their cousins, my favorite has to be the green onion because of its distinct flavor, which tends to be less overpowering than a red onion and not as sweet as a white one. Combined with a juicy tomato, it enhances the natural flavor of the tomato by adding just the right amount of “kick”, not to mention the lovely color combination. And if you look in places such as your local farmers market, you can find some great deals on this lovely little onion.
You can certainly make this in a hurry as it takes just about 10-12 minutes to prepare if you include chopping time (provided your quinoa is cooked and ready to go, of course). It’s great as a side or as a nice lunch entrée because of the lovely mother grain, it’s got plenty of protein to help keep you full for awhile. Lovely, easy, healthy, and inexpensive; what’s not to love?
Quinoa with Mushrooms, Tomatoes & Scallions (makes 2-3 lunch servings; total cost per serving: ~$2)
1 large tomato, diced
2-3 scallions, chopped (both greens & whites)
6-8 white mushrooms, sliced
1-2 T butter
Salt & pepper to taste
Melt the butter in a medium skillet. Add the mushrooms with a pinch of salt and pepper and cook over medium heat until they begin to soften. Add the diced tomato and cook for about 2-3 minutes, making sure the tomatoes release their juices but do not turn mushy. Add the quinoa and mix everything together, cooking until everything is heated through. Lastly, add the chopped scallions and mix well. Check for seasoning and adjust accordingly. Serve hot or cold, on its own or on a nice bed of greens. Enjoy!
(NOTE: If you’re enjoying this cold and prefer a moister quinoa, add a tiny bit of your favorite salad dressing and mix well. Yum!)