This is adapted from an orzo salad recipe that I’ve been making for years. The main difference here (other than the quinoa) is the addition of the cooked shallots, which offer a toasty, savory flavor that’s a delicious counterpoint to the lemon and parsley. So. Freaking. Delicious. Also: gluten free.
- 1 cup quinoa (rinsed well)
- 2 cups water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 shallot
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1/2 cup Kalamata olives, coarsely chopped
- 1 cup fresh parsley, medium chop
- 1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, cut in halves
- 1 cup crumbled feta
- Fresh cracked pepper and salt to taste
Place the quinoa (after rinsing it well) into a medium sauce pan with the water and 1 tsp salt. Bring it to a boil on high heat uncovered, and then lower to simmer and cover until the water is all absorbed and the quinoa looks fluffy, with the little “tails” beginning to separate. (Usually around 20 minutes.)
While the quinoa cooks, thinly slice the shallot and brown it on the stovetop in olive oil (usually around 5 minutes), then drain out the oil and set aside. In a medium bowl:, toss tomatoes, parsley, olives, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
When the quinoa is done, scoop it into a large salad or mixing bowl, and toss gently with a fork to let it cool. Add some cracked pepper and salt to taste. Toss in the browned shallots. When the quinoa has cooled enough that it’s no longer steaming, add the vegetable mix, the feta, and toss well with a fork. (Mixing with a spoon can smoosh the quinoa and make it mushy.)
If you have leftovers, store in fridge tightly covered for up to 2 days.