Antioxidant quinoa salad with kale

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It’s the time of transition.  Summer heat is still lingering, but I can feel fall ready to break through.  I’m ready for boots and scarves, who’s with me?  This quinoa salad has a blend of summer and fall flavors making it the perfect meal to say, summer I still like you, but fall, you can show up whenever.

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As you can see, the salad is loaded with antioxidants from the blueberries and sweet potatoes, and contains one of the most nutritionally-dense foods, kale!  It’s delicious because the sweet potatoes are rich, the pine nuts salty and gently crunchy and the blueberries provide a wonderful tart-sweet flavor.  I adapted this recipe from a friend who told me about a similar dish she made off a Pinterest recipe.  Random, I know!  Inspiration is everywhere.

Recipe and ingredients:

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 sweet potato, washed and diced
  • 1T olive oil
  • 1T chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 cup lacinto kale, washed and chopped
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup blueberries
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts, I used raw
  • curly parsley, chopped
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  1. Cook quinoa according to package directions
  2. In a 350-degree oven, place a baking sheet with your diced sweet potato pieces that have been rubbed with olive oil and chopped fresh rosemary. This takes about 20 to 25 minutes. Check the potatoes after 15 minutes and rotate or mix them around so they cook evenly.
  3. While the quinoa and potatoes are cooking, wash your blueberries, chop your green onions and parsley.
  4. Once the quinoa is about done cooking, add your chopped kale and let it wilt in the warmth of your quinoa.  Kale should not be heated more than 10 minutes, otherwise it will loose some of its nutritional value. Thanks, 50 Shades of Kale.  Also, did you know there are 48 kale varieties?!  Crazy!
  5. Transfer the quinoa-kale mixture to a large glass bowl.  Add all your ingredients except the blueberries and mix well.
  6. Once the quinoa has cooled a little (5 minutes or so) add the blueberries and gently mix again.
  7. Add salt and pepper to taste

This dish lasts about 4 to 5 days covered in the fridge.  Spruce up with some EVOO or fresh lemon juice, if necessary.  This dish is best served room temperature.  Enjoy!

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