I like quinoa but can find it difficult to work with. It’s easy to cook, that’s for sure, but sometimes the flavor’s I pair it with just don’t seem to meld quite right.
But I tried it again recently after stumbling upon this recipe on Epicurious.com for black bean and tomato quinoa (Gourmet, July 2007), a peaceful melding of central American flavors that reminds me of the food I ate in Costa Rica.
It sounded perfect: not only would I get to use super-healthy quinoa, but I could pair it with black beans, my new best friend! Yes, remember those from black bean brownies welcome to my world? I’m still appalled with myself for ignoring such a delicious bean for so many years. Shame on me, and shame on you if you don’t try this earthy and fragrant warm salad!
Oh, and did I mention my favorite part aside from it tasting great and being healthy? Black bean and tomato quinoa is quick and easy to make because all the ingredients can be prepped and mixed while the quinoa cooks.
I served this salad warm as a side dish to salmon seasoned with salt and fresh lime juice. Ah, yes, life is good.
Here’s the recipe:
Black Bean and Tomato Quinoa (adapted from Gourmet, July 2007)
1 1/4 cups water
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1 cup uncooked quinoa
1 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed well and drained
1 cup chopped tomatoes (about 2 small, seeds and cores removed)
1/4 cup minced cilantro
2 tablespoons olive oil
Zest of 1 lime
Juice of 1 lime
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 scallions, thinly sliced
Measure the water into a small pot and add 1/2 teaspoon salt. Bring the water to a boil. Rinse the quinoa very well under cold running water then add to the boiling water. Decrease the heat to low and cover; simmer for 12 minutes then remove the pot from the heat and let sit covered for 5 minutes. Cool slightly.
Mix the remaining ingredients in a bowl and add the quinoa. Adjust seasonings to taste and serve as a main course or side dish.