This short post is about making your summer easier, your time spent in the kitchen shorter, and your summer salads more satisfying.
The next time you cook a grain — any grain — to go with a hot dish, make twice as much as you need. Set aside what you require for dinner, and then place the remainder in a glass or ceramic dish, immediately marinate it, let it cool, and then place it in the fridge for use later in the week.
Within the next few days, prepare your favorite salad and add a scoop or two of the marinated grain.
My salad, in the photo below, has a base of mixed salad greens and is topped with: shredded carrot salad from The Art of Simple Food, by Alice Waters; fresh sugar snap peas; minced Bermuda onion; grape tomatoes; avocado in fresh lime juice; and a generous scoop of marinated red quinoa.
I marinated the quinoa in a dressing I made in the proportions of 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar to 3 tablespoons of good olive oil.
Mark Bittman offered up a similar salad idea in “Eat With the Grain,” in the June 12 New York Times Magazine. He suggested using 2 cups of grain to 1 cup of fresh veggies.
There is no need to measure or to be that precise. Go with what you have on hand. This is a great way to use up leftovers that don’t quite make a meal on their own.
Adding a grain turns a simple salad into a satisfying meal. With a grain like quinoa, it’s one packed with protein as well.
Doesn’t this sound easy?
Have a great week. Happy eating.
I often blog on food or food issues on Monday in support of Meatless Monday, one of several programs developed in the Healthy Monday project, founded in 2003 in association with Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Communications. Meatless Monday’s goal is “to help reduce meat consumption 15% in order to improve personal health and the health of our planet.”