Happy 4th of July, oh, I know you may maybe in a holiday rush much like Bijouxs and you need something fast and fresh for your Fourth of July bash. How about a side dish that is patriotic with a little firecracker kick? Red, White & Blueberry Quinoa is your Bijouxs, and I will be brief.
This little jewel of a side salad is one I made often when working as a private chef. Over the years I have adapted the recipe, of course you should feel free to do the same, but for the 4th of July, Red, White & Blue reign supreme; red pepper flakes, creamy white pine nuts, and dried blueberries add the spark.
Quinoa, amino acid-rich (protein) seed, cooks up in a jiff and is a great neutral vehicle, like rice, to house a collection of tastes. This easy quinoa recipe embraces your kitchen independence.
First, cook the quinoa according to the package directions, which will take about 15- 20 minutes. I fire up my Spartan little red rice cooker and let it to do the work while I prepare the rest of the ingredients. I cook the quinoa in chicken broth; I favor the savory saltiness, but you can also use vegetable broth (make sure it is clear or it will muddy the quinoa) or just use water.
You are now ready to prepare the fireworks that give the dish it’s flavor pop. First, toast up the pine nuts in a medium hot skillet until lightly golden brown and remove to cool. Using the same skillet, sauté the shallots. Zest the lemon and orange peels, and have the arsenal of other flavors measured and ready to go.
When the quinoa has cooked (it should be translucent and absorbed all the liquid) still hot, add the pine nuts, shallots, dried blueberries, grated citrus zests, butter, and olive oil, toss gently. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper. Add the red pepper flakes to your taste. I like to pass additional red pepper flakes for those who really would like a firecracker pop to the dish.
Red, White & Blueberry Quinoa may be served warm or at room temperature. It packs a salty-sweet punch, perfect with burgers, chicken, or anything off the grill. A simple table set in American blue denim, white linen napkins, and individual water bottles for all.
Bijouxs is thinking and thanking, wishing everyone a very Happy 4th of July!
As always, enjoy. B