Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Time Travel to Summer

Citrus flavors remind me of summer: picnics, sunshine, and eating on the porch. Pass me some lemonade and sunscreen, and rev up the lawn mower. The sweet senses of summer are just around the corner.

What, you may ask, brings summer (and citrus) to mind in the dead of winter? Why would I write about a summer-time dish...while I'm buried under a blanket on the couch, wearing my snowflake pajama pants?

Try Citrus Quinoa Salad. This big salad rocked my summer-loving world--I found myself mentally time-traveling to July with every bite.

This summer-in-the-winter dinner dish pairs sweet clementines with savory seasonings like cumin, coriander and cilantro. And don't forget the avocado. Oh, the creamy, buttery avocado (did you ever taste a more buttery vegetable?).

With this salad, enjoy the taste of summer in the dead of winter. Time-traveling to July is just what we need when snow covers the ground.

Citrus Quinoa Salad
(recipe adapted from Cooking Light)

The dressing for this salad is truly a show-stopper--it makes the dish, so don't even think about substituting with a store-bought variation. Try adding toasted nuts for an additional punch of protein.

Dressing Ingredients:
  • 2 tsp. grated orange rind
  • Grated lemon rind from one lemon
  • 3 TBSP fresh-squeezed orange juice
  • 1 TBSP fresh-squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • sprinkling of paprika
  • A drizzle of olive oil (about 1 TBSP)
Salad Ingredients:
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 - 3/4 cup water
  • 3 - 4 clementines, coursely chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 firm avocado, chopped
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped green onion
1) Whisk together dressing ingredients until well-combined; set aside.

2) Place quinoa and water in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer until water is absorbed and quinoa is fully cooked (about 10 - 15 minutes).

3) Combine quinoa with vegetables. Pour dressing over quinoa mixture and stir to coat. Close your eyes and imagine it's July...and you're sipping a margarita with your bowl of Citrus Quinoa Salad...on the beach.


  1. oh boo.. i'm sad peppers are not in season.. I WANNNNNT THEM!

    This looks so zesty and yummy! I would def make this to pair with my summery-in-ze-winter kabobs! =) perfect pair! <3

    Jenn @ Peas & Crayons

  2. That salad looks great! All the flavors seem like they would be so good together. I'm definitely book marking the recipe to try.

  3. Kylie, you're such a healthy eater, I love it! I also try to eat as healthy as possible... but with indulgences here and there :]

  4. this looks really good, kylie...much better than the citrus quinoa i made this fall!

  5. Citrus reminds me of summer too...and I just love that it tastes its very best during the cold months of winter. Our bodies need a little jolt of summer memory to make it through the dreary days. This salad looks like a winner. Thank you for sharing this plate of wholesome goodness. I hope you have a beautiful Hump Day!

  6. I love the title of this post. Am I the only one who can't digest quinoa? It gives me such stomach aches. Have you experienced that? Do you think I need to try eating it some more so I get used to it? I really enjoy it and would so love to be able to cook with it....

  7. All the citrus and spices in this sound great! Definitely summer-inducing. For some reason, we still have lots of tomatoes down here, so I had a salad with some and avocado tonight. Summer was calling both of our names!

  8. this looks gorgeous!! oh wow! i am drooling over this right now. thanks for sharing this lovely recipe. have a great day:)

  9. Yum! You definitely have me crazy summer right now. Why must it be so far away?!


  10. I have been looking for a new quinoa recipe! This look so good, I am definitely going to try it! Thanks!

  11. That sounds wonderful!! It's a meal right up my alley! I would definitely love it! :)

  12. I've been looking for more quinoa recipes--I just made a really great quinoa "lasagna" from Peas and Thank You, but so many of the recipes I've found have been some variation on quinoa and black beans. This sounds like just what I've been looking for!