Quinoa, Chickpea and Feta Salad

This is one of my go-to salads. I am obsessed with all things feta. I’d eat it by the handful, tbh. I often do variations of this based on what I have in my house at the time. This salad can be served warm or cold. Sometimes you just crave a big colorful bowl of veggies. Feta and balsamic go together beautifully.

sal6

Some optional add ins:

  • cucumber
  • zuchinni
  • squash
  • fresh basil
  • fresh mint
  • fresh oregano
  • tofu
  • chopped chicken if you absolutely need meat

Ingredients:

  • 1 can of rinsed and strained chickpeas (Garbanzo beans)
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped
  • 1 tomato, chopped
    • you can use a cup of halved cherry tomatoes
  • 2 cup of fresh spinach
  • 1 cup (measured uncooked) quinoa
  • 1 cup of feta
  • 1 tbsp of balsamic vinegar (optional, I love vinegar)
  • 1 tbsp of balsamic dressing
  • Seasoning, to taste:
    • kosher salt
    • black pepper
    • crushed red pepper
    • crushed mint
    • oregano
  1. Prepare your quinoa
    • I prepare my quinoa the same way I prepare my brown rice: LIKE PASTA! Boil it to your desired doneness and then drain in a strainer. Boom!
  2. Chop your veg
  3. Measure out your seasoningsal2
  4. Add to a large bowl
  5. Add cooked quinoa
    • The cooked quinoa will warm the salad and wilt the spinachsal1
  6. Add seasoning
  7. Add dressing(s)
  8. Toss
  9. Serve warm or coldsal3sal4sal5

 

Crispy Baked Zucchini Fries

I wanted a really yummy side for this meal that I’ve been daydreaming about for a week (post coming soon). I wanted something crunchy, but after the holiday, I couldn’t bear the thought of something heavy or deep-fried.

 

Enter crispy, baked zucchini fries. Now, before you raise and eyebrow- these were so delicious I haven’t stopped talking about them. However much you plan to make? Double that. Freeze what’s leftover and thank me later. I bet you you’ll love them and I bet you’ll use these techniques on whatever veggies you have laying around (string beans, peppers- hello!)

 

You want to season the fries generously. You will be doing the three-stop dredge (flour, egg, panko). Instead of frying these, we will line them on a baking rack on top of a cookie sheet and bake them on high heat until crispy and golden brown.

 

These taste so good you will forget that they are good for you! Low-carb, baked vegetables.

 

Insert heart-eye emoji.

Throw in the pig emoji too.


Ingredients:

(This recipe can easily be scaled up or down, there are very few precise ingredients here. This is just what I did for dinner tonight.)

 

1 large green zucchini

1 large yellow zucchini

Flour

Egg

Panko

Salt

Pepper

Garlic powder

Paprika

Cooking spray or olive oil


  1. Pre-heat your oven to 425.
  1. Cut the ends off of your zucchini.
  2. Cut the zucchini in half.
  3. Slice them length wise into about four slices ¼” to ½” thick.zucfrieszuchfries2
  4. Slice these into about 3-4 “fries”.
  5. Place your “fries” into a container and season them generally.
  6. Allow them to rest as you continue to prep your dredging station. Flour, panko and egg are not measured. I eyeball it. But always, ALWAYS use less than you think you will need. You can always add more if you need it. However, if you use too much you’re not pouring that flour back or that panko back into the containers. That’s gotta go in the trash. I try to minimize waste where I can. Use less, you can always add more-rule of thumb. Note: Liquid will likely accumulate in the zucchini container due to the salt; if so, simply drain the liquid.zucfries3
  1. A few at a time, place the “fries” into the flour and coat evenly.
  2. Then place them in the egg and coat evenly.
  3. Toss them in the panko and coat evenly. Press the panko gently into the “fries”.
  1. Place them on the baking rack until you are ready to go.zuchfries4
  2. (Note: if you do a large amount, these can be frozen (and kept frozen) until you are ready to use them. If you are baking these from the freezer, simply follow the remaining steps. Do not thaw.)
  1. Before baking, spray generously with cooking spray or drizzle with olive oil. Optional: sprinkle with sea salt or coarse kosher salt.zuchfries5-copy
  1. Place the baking rack on top of a cookie sheet and bake for about 20 minutes or until crispy and golden brown.zuchfries6zuchfries7zuchfries8

These are best fresh, piping hot from the oven.

© 2017 by Alexa Mason. All Rights Reserved