For the Salad:
1 c. uncooked quinoa
2–3 cups frozen peas
1/2 c. feta cheese
6 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
1/2 c. freshly chopped basil and cilantro
1/2 c. almonds, pulsed in a food processor until crushed
For the Dressing:
1/3 c. freshly squeezed lemon juice (1–2 large lemons)
1/3 c. olive oil
1/4 tsp salt (more to taste)
3 tbsp honey
Cook the quinoa according to package directions. You can make this the night before and let it chill in the fridge- it separates better for the salad.
Bring a pot of water to boil and then turn off the heat. Add the peas and cover until bright green. Toss the quinoa with the peas, feta, bacon, herbs, and almonds.
Puree all the dressing ingredients in the food processor. Toss the dressing with the salad ingredients. Season generously with salt and pepper. Serve tossed with fresh baby spinach or just by itself!
Nutrition Per Serving:
A Note from our Registered Dietician, Joni Gerken:
"Quinoa is technically a seed but is classified as a whole grain. Quinoa is often considered a “Super Food” because it has more protein, fiber, and fat (omega 6) than other grains. The quinoa plant has been cultivated for about 5000 years, and originated in the Andean region of South America; mainly Bolivia, Peru, and Ecuador. After seeds are collected, they are processed to remove naturally occurring saponins from the outside, which are the plants home made pesticide. The biggest concern with the saponins is the bitter flavor they give the grain. Saponins are considered an anti-nutrient because they can interfere with nutrient absorption, but the content in quinoa is relatively small to cause concern about any toxic qualities. Quinoa that is boxed is often labelled as pre-rinsed and does not need to be rinsed before preparation. If buying quinoa in bulk, rinsing is recommended. Saponins have a sudsy quality and will foam up much like soap when you rinse the quinoa with water. Also, make sure to drain the water well so that it doesn’t interfere with your water to grain ratio for cooking."