Lemon Herb Quinoa with Spring Peas and Basil



I have made this quinoa dish several times now, always serving it with chicken dishes (we eat a lot of chicken in our house). The original recipe calls for adding 1/4 cup of shelled hemp seeds. To date, I have not found hemp seeds in any of the markets in which I shop, so I left them out of the recipe. Perhaps I’ll be able to find them in a health food store. Even without the hemp seeds, this recipe is delicious. It’s the sweet mustard dressing that does it for me. It’s great served both warm or cold (although I slightly prefer it warm.) It’s great as a leftover as well. The fresh basil will get dark overnight in the fridge, but the taste won’t change.

The boys, as usual, wanted nothing to do with this recipe. My vegetarian son tried it under duress, and claimed he didn’t like it. Tonight I’m going to make some plain quinoa and try to get the boys to eat that. I’ve tried it a number of times in the past, and no one liked it, but I think it’s high time to try it again. Plain quinoa with a little melted butter and some salt – yum! Now if I can only convince the boys…

Lemon Herb Quinoa with Spring Peas and Basil

Adapted ever so slightly from Food52.com

1 cup Quinoa, dry
2 cups Water, cold
1 cup Green peas, fresh or frozen
1/4 cup Fresh basil, finely chopped
2 tablespoons Olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Maple syrup
1/4 teaspoon Sea salt (plus a little extra)
1 dash Black pepper

Rinse quinoa in a mesh strainer with cold water. Transfer to a pot and add the 2 cups cold water and a nice pinch of salt. Bring to a boil.

Reduce heat to a simmer, and leave the lid of the pot slightly ajar while cooking. Simmer for about 15 minutes, or until quinoa is plump, the water is absorbed, and you see the tiny little outer “shells” of the quinoa grain coming loose in the pot.

Remove quinoa from heat and let sit, covered, for 5 minutes or so. Fluff with a fork and set aside.

While quinoa is cooking, boil fresh or frozen peas till warm and tender. Drain and set aside.

Mix quinoa, peas and basil in a large bowl. Whisk together the oil, lemon juice, maple syrup, dijon mustard, 1/4 tsp sea salt, and black pepper. Pour over the quinoa salad mixture, and serve warm or cold. Dish will keep very well (though the basil might turn a little dark) in the fridge for 2-3 days.

Yield: 4 servings

One year ago: Cinnamon Streusel Baked French Toast Sticks
Two years ago: Coconut Bread
Three years ago: Salted Chocolate Caramel Cookie Bars
Four years ago: Spanakopita Lasagna
Five years ago: Chocolate Chip Waffles
Six years ago: Chive Risotto Cakes
Seven years ago: Cheddar Corn Chowder

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