Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Stand Out Sides: Warm Ratatouille Quinoa Salad

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One of John's worst nightmares is hearing that we'll be having ratatouille for dinner.  Okay, maybe not really but it is certainly close and is up there in his list of "non-favorite" foods with mushrooms, cauliflower, and escargot (something I will be indulging in while in Paris in a few weeks but what he most certainly will not share).  He hates ratatouille because he says that it's all just one flavor.

I totally understood that which is why I set out to make something that was a little less one-stop shop and a little more thoughtful in it's preparation.  After all, he loves eggplant, peppers, tomatoes, zucchini, and garlic.  How in his right mind could he not like ratatouille?!  I love this salad because it's quick to prepare and a great hearty side dish. 

Often in the summer, side dishes are light - grilled vegetables, etc.  but sometimes when I only have one chicken breast left in the freezer and I haven't gotten food shopping in two weeks, you need a side dish that's going to be hearty.  Something that's going to stick with you.  And if you're dreading the onset of autumn, this allows you to hold onto the delicious summer produce while warming you up on those upcoming cooler days.

Warm Ratatouille Quinoa Salad
Serves:  4
1/2 cup quinoa
6 tablespoons olive oil
1 eggplant, diced
1 zucchini, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 red onion, diced
1 green pepper, diced
2 plum tomatoes, diced
2 teaspoons salt

Prepare quinoa per package directions.  In a large wok, heat half of the olive oil (3 tablespoons) over medium heat.  Then, add eggplant and zucchini.  Cook 3-5 minutes until eggplant has released some water.  Remove the vegetables and set aside.  Add the remaining olive oil to the wok and cook, over medium heat, the red onion and garlic about 90 seconds until fragrant.  Then, add the green pepper and eggplant mixture.  Cook an additional 3-5 minutes until vegetables are tender.  Stir in tomatoes and salt and turn the heat down to low, cooking an additional 2-3 minutes (tomatoes will start to break down).  Stir in quinoa.  Serve immediately.

Until the next time my oven is on...


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Welcome! I'm Dani (aka the Growing Foodie), just a girl balancing her career and passion for all things edible in NYC. I hope you'll join me in my adventures in life, through food. (Click for More)
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