My life has a superb cast but I can't figure out the plot.
~ Ashleigh Brilliant

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Sunny Bunny Quinoa Salad

Aren't bunny butts just the cutest? :-)
(And this is an appropriate image for me to use, because lately I have been a little behind! *snork*)

It's been a while since I've shared a recipe, so here's a spring and summer favorite of ours that's based on a delicious dish we used to enjoy years ago at The Good Earth Food Co-op deli in Billings, MT. In addition to adding and deleting several ingredients, I also changed the name because while the original, "Quinoa, Sunflower Seed and Carrot Salad," was fairly descriptive, I found it cumbersome and boring. So in honor of spring I've shortened "sunflower seed" to "sunny," and pay homage to the carrots by subbing the adorably (and today, appropriately) rhyming "bunny." :-)

Sunny Bunny Quinoa Salad
(based on a recipe from The Good Earth Food Co-op, Billings, MT)

1 - 1 1/2 cups organic quinoa (regular or red; we prefer Inca Red)
2 organic carrots, shredded or diced
About 4 organic green onions, chopped
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
1 cup frozen sweet peas, thawed
About 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup sunflower seeds (I use organic raw)
3 garlic cloves, chopped fine/minced
3 TBSP lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
3 TBSP Tamari

Rinse quinoa under running water (the Inca Red is pre-rinsed, so this step isn't necessary). Add to 3 cups water, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until tender ~ about 15 minutes.

Transfer cooked quinoa to a large serving dish or bowl. Add remaining ingredients and mix together well. If using 1 1/2 cups of quinoa, you may want to increase the lemon juice and tamari by 1 tsp each (or to taste). You can serve immediately, or chill and enjoy later.

Store in tightly-covered container in refrigerator.

If you've never had the pleasure, it's time to give quinoa ("keen-wa") a try. An ancient and important pseudocereal crop from the Andes, it's an excellent (and gluten-free) source of ideal protein, as well as lysine, calcium, iron, phosphorous, vitamins A, E and B and potassium. It's quick cooking with a delicious, nutty taste and is wonderful in almost any dish, from soups to salads to desserts. (Here's another quinoa recipe especially suited to this time of year - FatFreeVegan's Spring Green Quinoa).

I spoke too soon in my previous post... we had our end of March blizzard after all. It just arrived a day late! Mother Nature's April Fool's joke on me! We didn't get nearly the amount of snow we did last year, but it was enough... about 8 inches of heavy, wet, slushy stuff on top of ice. Took the last three days to shovel it all off the deck. And it's not likely to melt any time soon... it's only 16ยบ here this morning! Needless to say, the Easter Bunny is LESS than impressed with the local conditions!

But to his credit, he did hop by and hide some dog treats for the girls, so we're off to enjoy the Three Stooges-like entertainment of watching their search-and-munch brouhaha. Today is also our horse Mocha's 22nd birthday, so we'll be having a carrot and apple party down at the barn later. Such festivities here today!

May your Easter basket also be filled with festive fun! :-)


  1. Lalo,

    Great salad recipe. Thanks for sharing!

    OMG, more snow, I can't imagine! Mother nature needs to give you a break soon.

    Happy B'day to Mocha!

    talk to you soon,

  2. Hopefully the snow melts soon. That's some late snow!

    The salad sounds right up my alley. Mike and I have been trying a lot of different recipes lately & this one will have to go on the list. :)

  3. What a fun Easter you had! It inspired me to have an Easter egg hunt with the Wheekers too, albeit a bit late. :)

    I'm always on the lookout for new quinoa recipes that don't have fancy ingredients in them and yours fit the bill! Will let you know when I've given it a try. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Ali - I'm still wondering what your version of this recipe consisted of and how you liked it!

    Mother Nature won't be done dumping snow on us till June, but at least there should be fewer snowstorms dumping less snow as time goes on. (Though the biggest blizzards can be in April!) August is the only month on record with no measurable snowfall in Wyoming. Can you believe that?

    Mocha says thank you! He'll be starring in my next post, and looks forward to Auntie Alicia's compliments. LOL

    VW - I hope you'll post about your Wheekers' Easter treat hunt! (The photos of our dogs' Easter treat hunt will share space with Mocha's birthday post). Did Bert and Belle find their goodies quickly? I leave Val and Tino's food out in plain site, and THEY hide it, so I didn't think an Easter Egg hunt would work well with them. LOL

    I think you'll really enjoy this salad, and yes please... let me know! :-)

  5. Lalo,

    I thought your version should go up first since it started with you. We liked it a lot. I will be making it again soon. When I do, I will post the recipe then.

    Only August doesn't get much snow. Yikes! I don't know how you do it.

    Can't wait to see your post about Mocha. He is such a gorgeous boy.


  6. What nice blogging etiquette you have, Ali! :-) I look very forward to your quinoa salad post! :-)

    And I'll try to publish Mocha's post this afternoon, depending on how much offline stuff I manage to accomplish - or tomorrow morning before I head to town. (I think you'll really enjoy this one!) ;-)

  7. Blogger's gremlins are still celebrating April Fool's Day, apparently, as Molly's (Vegan Dog's Life) comment has been invisible to me since yesterday, though Molly says she can still see it. Am I the only who can't? Argh. Well, just in case others can't and it fails to reappear, I'll quote Molly's quote!...

    Hopefully the snow melts soon. That's some late snow!

    The salad sounds right up my alley. Mike and I have been trying a lot of different recipes lately & this one will have to go on the list. :)

    Molly - I'm so glad this recipe sounds like it will work for you! I love trying new and different recipes... been doing a lot of that myself lately! It's too easy to slip into a rut, even a delicious one. :-) Let me know how you like it!

    And thanks for your warm snow-melting wishes! ;-)

  8. Lalo,

    I can see Mary's comment too.


  9. I'm all invisible & stuff. Must be my super ninja blogging skills. :p

  10. "Super ninja blogging skills"... LOL!! Good one, Molly! But I wouldn't strip naked and dance around my blog's comment room making faces at the rest of us if I were you, my ninja friend, because you're not invisible anymore! ;-) Your comment has finally reappeared at my end, yay! (That was bizarre!)

  11. Yummmm! I tried red quinoa for the first time in Peru and loved it. Your salad looks amazing!

  12. Jill - you ate red quinoa for the first time in Peru? Wow, talk about going straight to the source and eating local!! :-) Thanks for saying my salad looks amazing... I think your blog looks amazing! I was only able to take a quick peek at it yesterday, but a peek was all it took to sign up as a follower! I hope to get a chance to explore your archives in the days to come. As a vagabond at heart who doesn't get to travel much these days, I know I'll derive vicarious pleasure reading about your vegan adventures across the world! How exciting! Thanks so much for leaving your comment!


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  • THE HUMANE GARDENER ~ Nancy Lawson
  • THE WORLD WITHOUT US ~ Alan Weisman

There is still strong in our society the belief
that animals and the natural world have value
only insofar as they can be converted into revenue.
That nature is a commodity.
And that the American dream is one of unlimited consumption.
There are many of us, on the other hand,
who believe that animals and the natural world
have value by virtue of being alive.
That Nature is a community to which we belong
and to which we owe our lives.
And that the deeper American dream is one of unlimited compassion.

~John Robbins, "The Food Revolution"

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