Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Quinoa-Summer Squash Salad, With Some Fava Beans. And a Nice... ummmm... Glass of Water

Now that I am keeping a food diary, I am suddenly REALLY conscious of what I eat (including the amazingly rich and oh-so-delicious milkshake from Udder Delights that served as "dinner" this evening).  While I'm trying to be good (key word: trying), I'm not always that successful.  I snack.  A LOT.
So I tried to make up for it yesterday evening for dinner.
I had one, poor, lonely summer squash that stayed unsquishy while we were in Michigan, and I thought to my self, self, what can I do with this bad boy?  I'm not completely sure what I typed into the search engine box other than summer squash - I think it MAY have been almonds, after a search for trout almondine that was remotely healthy and easy - but I found this recipe for a pearl barley salad that I immediately knew I could make with a few modifications.  We didn't have any pearl barley, but we do have plenty of quinoa.  We always have frozen edamame in the freezer that I could use instead of the fava beans (I've never even SEEN a fava bean).  We didn't have green onions or red onions, but we did have green red onions and an onion.  I can make a vinaigrette with vinegar and mustard instead of the citrus juice (which we, of course, DO have, but I didn't want to thaw it just for this).  So I bookmarked it and went on my merry way.
Then, there I was.  In the produce section of Sprouts Farmer's Market, just checking out what was there.  Fava beans.

It was like the internet and grocery gods converged in the store and told me to make that salad.

If you listen carefully, you can hear them whisper,
"Buy us!"
So, while HRH was napping, I prepared the salad so that the flavors could mingle.
I prepared the quinoa and shelled the fava beans.  This was far more difficult than shelling peas or edamame - the pods are MUCH heavier.

I boiled the fava beans until they were tender, and then doused them in cold water to get the covering of the seeds off.
After all that work, I had slightly less than one cup.

Into the salad they went, along with all of their buddies and the dressing (I didn't use all the dressing).
All the salad needed was a little salt and pepper (which I didn't add to the salad before dishing, as that's such a subjective amount), and it was delicious.  I even broke my "no seconds" rule; the fava beans, were, truly, delicious, and I'm already considering planting them in the backyard.

I took this in my lunch to the jury room today (yep, still going to that, but it's been really interesting, to be honest with you), and the flavors were just as good having sat for a day.
My only words of caution - if your onions are particularly pungent, it would behoove you to have several sticks of gum so that your fellow jurors/co-workers/general public isn't repulsed by you.  I had to brush my teeth twice last night, and today I brought a new pack of gum with me just so I could make sure that I wasn't offensive, at least in the breath area.

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