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Quinoa and Pistachio Salad with Moroccan Pesto

Quinoa [KEEN-wah] is a quick-cooking whole grain supplying protein, iron, and vitamin E. Pair this side dish with simple grilled chicken or fish. For a vegetarian entrée option, use organic vegetable broth and add one (15 1/2-ounce) can of rinsed, drained chickpeas to ramp up the protein.

Cooking Light JULY 2009

  • Yield: 6 servings (serving size: 3/4 cup)

Ingredients

  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 2 large garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 12 oil-cured olives, pitted and chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped pistachios

Preparation

1. Preheat broiler.

2. Cut red bell pepper in half lengthwise; discard seeds and membranes. Place pepper halves, skin sides up, on a foil-lined baking sheet; flatten with hand. Broil 12 minutes or until blackened. Place in a zip-top plastic bag; seal. Let stand for 10 minutes. Peel and chop.

3. Place quinoa, broth, 1/2 cup water, and juice in a large saucepan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 12 minutes or until liquid is absorbed.

4. Place cilantro and next 7 ingredients (through garlic) in a food processor; process until smooth. Combine bell pepper, quinoa mixture, cilantro mixture, and olives in a large bowl. Sprinkle with nuts.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 263
  • Fat: 15.8g
  • Saturated fat: 2.2g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 8.3g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 2.4g
  • Protein: 5.8g
  • Carbohydrate: 28.2g
  • Fiber: 4g
  • Cholesterol: 0.0mg
  • Iron: 3.3mg
  • Sodium: 318mg
  • Calcium: 36mg
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