Black Quinoa Salad with Orange Cumin Dressing

By none

Black Quinoa with Orange & Cumin Dressing Recipe

Last week my husband came home from a trip to Whole Foods, clutching a bag of dark grains in his hand. He had gone in hopes of replenishing our supply of red quinoa, but ventured into a bin in the bulk food sections labeled “Black Quinoa”. Aside from the darker color, this new version of one of our favorite grains didn’t look significantly different from its red sibling and, therefore, I assumed that the taste and texture would be the same.

According to Ernie New and John McCamant, two farmers who live in the high San Luis valley of Colorado, black quinoa was born by chance. When New and McCamant attempted to duplicate the growing conditions of the Andean Mountains, the seed of the white quinoa crossed with lamb’s quarter, a native North American plant. The result was a new species that is now called black quinoa. While the shape of the grain is similar to the traditional white and red versions, the texture is slightly crunchier and has a significantly nuttier flavor.

If you are unable to find black quinoa, don’t fret; this salad works just as well with white or red quinoa. The orange and cumin dressing, mixed with tender golden raisins, lends a Moroccan flavor to this easy side dish. It is a satisfying accompaniment to grilled meat. Alternatively, pair with beans for a protein-packed vegetarian meal. The leftovers, if there are any, can be stored in the refrigerator for a couple of days.

(Update: Last week, I co-hosted a discussion on healthy breakfast practices with fellow bloggers and two very helpful dietitians on TheMotherhood. For a recap of the discussion, including information on the importance of fiber, convenient breakfast ideas, and the benefits of cereal, be sure to check out the discussion summary.)

The recipe:

Pour quinoa into a fine mesh strainer and rinse until the water runs clear.

In a medium saucepan, combine quinoa, water and golden raisins. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to low. Cook until all of the water is absorbed, about 20 minutes. Fluff quinoa with a fork and transfer to a medium bowl. Allow the quinoa to cool to room temperature.

The dressing:
In a small bowl, whisk together fresh orange juice, ground cumin and salt. While whisking, slowly pour in olive oil.

Toss the quinoa with the dressing and sliced green onions. Serve.

Other quinoa recipes:

Cookin’ Canuck’s (from The Church Cook) Red Quinoa, Black Bean & Bell Pepper Salad
Cookin’ Canuck’s Quinoa with Caramelized Crimini Mushrooms, Soy Sauce & Ginger
Gluten-Free Girl’s Quinoa with Spring Vegetables & Walnut-Kale Pesto
Food 52?s One Pot Kale & Quinoa Pilaf
Eclectic Recipes’ Black Bean Mango Quinoa Salad

Black Quinoa with Orange & Cumin Dressing

1 cup black quinoa ...

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By none| April 27, 2011
Categories:  Eat

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