1 cup red organic quinoa (white or black work too)
2 cups water
2-3 Persian cucumbers diced small (or half of a large English seedless)
3 Roma tomatoes, diced small
1/2 of a small red onion ,diced fine
1 cup fresh finely chopped flat leaf parsley (Italian parsley)
1/2 cup fresh finely chopped mint leaves
6 tablespoons of dressing, recipe below
6 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 large garlic cloves, finely minced or pressed
1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Make the vinaigrette: whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl. This will make extra, in case you need a bit more. Add 1 cup of grains to a small saucepan a tight-fitting lid. I use a 2 quart pan. Add 2 cups water. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cover with lid. Turn heat to low. Cook until all water is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Turn off heat. Allow to stand for about 15 minutes to steam finish. The grains should be light and fluffy with the germ ring unfurled. Place quinoa in a bowl to cool and fluff with a fork. While quinoa is cooking, prep the vegetables and herbs. For cucumbers, quarter them, slice out the seedy center, cut each quarter into three long strips and cut across into fine dice. Do the same with the tomatoes. Take out the center of the tomatoes if they are super juicy. Add the cucumber, tomatoes, onion, herbs. When ready to serve add a few tablespoons of the dressing and toss gently. Add enough to flavor the salad but don't soak it in dressing. Serve chilled.
Notes: You can make this salad a day, even two days, ahead of serving. It will keep for five days undressed in the refrigerator. Dress before serving. To chop fresh herbs, wash and dry well. Dry herbs chop easily. Chopping wet or damp herbs just becomes a mess. Wash and dry on paper towels or in a salad spinner.