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Quinoa with Salad Greens & Radishes

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Quinoa with Salad Greens & Radishes

Formal Description:

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Quinoa with Salad Greens & Radishes is a delightful and nutritious dish that combines the wholesome goodness of quinoa with the refreshing crunch of salad greens and the peppery kick of radishes. It’s a balanced and vibrant meal option that is not only delicious but also packed with essential nutrients.

History:

Quinoa, often referred to as the “mother of all grains,” has a rich history dating back thousands of years. It was first cultivated by the Incas in the Andes mountains of South America around 3,000 to 4,000 years ago. Quinoa was considered sacred by the Incas due to its nutritional value and was even used in religious ceremonies.

In recent years, quinoa has gained immense popularity worldwide for its exceptional nutritional profile. It is an excellent source of plant-based protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. The combination of quinoa with fresh salad greens and radishes is a modern twist that showcases its versatility and pairs it with the crisp, refreshing flavors of salad greens and the peppery bite of radishes.

Components:

1. Quinoa: Quinoa is the primary ingredient and serves as the base of the dish. It’s a gluten-free pseudo-grain that’s high in protein, fiber, and various vitamins and minerals.

2. Salad Greens: Salad greens such as lettuce, arugula, spinach, or mixed greens add freshness, color, and a mild, leafy flavor to the dish. They provide essential vitamins and minerals.

3. Radishes: Radishes contribute a peppery and slightly spicy taste, as well as a pleasant crunch. They are a good source of vitamin C and antioxidants.

4. Dressing: A simple dressing made with olive oil, lemon juice or vinegar, salt, and pepper ties the ingredients together, enhancing the overall flavor.

5. Optional Additions: You can customize this dish with additional ingredients like cherry tomatoes, cucumber, avocado, or feta cheese for extra flavor and texture.

Steps to Prepare:

Step 1: Prepare the Quinoa

  • Rinse 1 cup of quinoa under cold water to remove its natural bitter coating.
  • In a saucepan, combine the rinsed quinoa with 2 cups of water.
  • Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 15-20 minutes until the quinoa is tender and the water is absorbed.
  • Fluff the cooked quinoa with a fork and let it cool.

Step 2: Prepare the Dressing

  • In a small bowl, whisk together 3 tablespoons of olive oil, 2 tablespoons of lemon juice or vinegar, a pinch of salt, and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Set aside.

Step 3: Assemble the Salad

  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the cooked and cooled quinoa, salad greens, and sliced radishes.
  • Drizzle the dressing over the salad and toss gently to coat all the ingredients evenly.

Step 4: Optional Additions

  • If desired, you can add cherry tomatoes, cucumber slices, avocado cubes, or crumbled feta cheese for extra flavor and texture.

Step 5: Serve

  • Divide the quinoa and salad mixture among serving plates or bowls.
  • Garnish with additional radish slices or fresh herbs if desired.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy!

Preparation Time:

The total preparation time for Quinoa with Salad Greens & Radishes is approximately 30-35 minutes, including the time to cook the quinoa and assemble the salad. This dish is a quick and healthy option for a wholesome meal that’s perfect for lunch or dinner.

Nutrition Facts for Quinoa with Salad Greens & Radishes

Note: The following nutrition information is approximate and can vary based on specific ingredients and portion sizes.

  • Serving Size: 1 plate (approximately 2 cups)
  • Calories: 300-350 calories per serving

Nutrient Breakdown:

  • Carbohydrates: Approximately 50-60 grams

    • Dietary Fiber: 8-10 grams
    • Sugars: 2-3 grams
  • Protein: Approximately 10-12 grams

  • Fat: Approximately 10-12 grams

    • Saturated Fat: 1-2 grams
    • Monounsaturated Fat: 6-7 grams
    • Polyunsaturated Fat: 2-3 grams
  • Cholesterol: 0 milligrams

  • Sodium: 300-350 milligrams (may vary based on added salt)

  • Potassium: Approximately 400-450 milligrams

  • Vitamins and Minerals:

    • Vitamin A: 20-30% of daily recommended intake (DRI)
    • Vitamin C: 20-30% of DRI
    • Vitamin K: 100-150% of DRI
    • Folate: 20-30% of DRI
    • Iron: 15-20% of DRI
    • Calcium: 6-8% of DRI
    • Magnesium: 20-25% of DRI

Health Information:

  1. High-Quality Protein: Quinoa is a complete protein source, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids. This makes it an excellent choice for vegetarians and vegans.

  2. Fiber-Rich: This dish is high in dietary fiber, which aids in digestion, helps maintain a feeling of fullness, and supports heart health.

  3. Low in Saturated Fat: The dish contains minimal saturated fat, which is beneficial for heart health.

  4. Rich in Vitamins: It provides significant amounts of vitamins A, C, and K, which are essential for various bodily functions, including immune support and blood clotting.

  5. Mineral-Rich: Quinoa is a good source of minerals like iron, calcium, and magnesium, which are important for bone health and overall well-being.

  6. Low in Cholesterol: This recipe is naturally cholesterol-free, making it heart-healthy.

  7. Balanced Nutrients: The combination of quinoa, salad greens, and radishes provides a balanced mix of nutrients, making it a nutritious and satisfying meal option.

  8. Low in Added Sugars: The natural sugars in this dish are minimal, contributing to a low overall sugar content.

  9. Potassium: It contains a moderate amount of potassium, which is important for maintaining healthy blood pressure and muscle function.

  10. Customizable: You can further enhance the nutritional profile by adding other vegetables like tomatoes, cucumbers, or avocados, which provide additional vitamins and minerals.

Overall, Quinoa with Salad Greens & Radishes is a nutritious and well-balanced meal option that can be part of a healthy diet. It’s rich in protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals while being low in saturated fat and cholesterol.

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