Quinoa, a “new” ingredient that has been around for thousands of years, is a tiny, high-protein grain from South America. It’s nicknamed the “wonder grain” because it cooks more quickly than rice, is virtually foolproof, and is lighter and more nutritious than other grains.
12 cups water
1 1/2 cups quinoa, rinsed
5 pickling cucumbers, peeled, ends trimmed, and cut into 1/4-inch cubes
1 small red onion, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
1 large tomato, cored, seeded, and diced
1 bunch Italian parsley leaves, chopped
2 bunches mint leaves, chopped
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 lemon, juiced
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 heads chicory, trimmed and separated into individual spears
1 avocado, peeled, seeded and diced, for garnish
Serves: 6 to 8 servings
Bring the water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add the quinoa, stir once, and return to a boil. Cook uncovered, over medium heat for 12 minutes. Strain and rinse well with cold water, shaking the sieve well to remove all moisture.
When dry, transfer the quinoa to a large bowl. Add the cucumbers, onion, tomato, parsley, mint, olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, salt, and pepper and toss well. Spoon onto endive spears, top with avocado, and serve.