Friday, June 8, 2012

Moroccan quinoa salad


Quinoa pronounced as 'keen-wah' is one of the most nutritious seed (pseudo-cereal) in town. The protein profile of quinoa is impressive because it is a complete protein, which means it contains all the nine essential amino acids. This fact is specially important for vegetarians and vegans since most other complete protein foods are meat or dairy-based, not grains. Being a whole-grain seed, it is also naturally a good source of iron, magnesium, vitamin E and potassium. You can find quinoa at any grocery stores or speciality food stores.
Quinoa can be substituted for any rice recipe but it works specially well in salads. Mix it with almost anything and you have yourselves a delicious, nutritious meal.
This recipe here has a great blend of flavours with mint and lime juice. The sweet and tart cranberries add the perfect punch and colour.  

Ingredients: (serves 4-6)
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
1/2 tsp each cumin and coriander powder plus salt to taste
1 can chickpeas drained and rinsed 
1 small English cucumber chopped
2 large carrots grated
1/2 small red onion chopped
1 red bell pepper chopped
handful dried cranberries (optional)
1/2 cup each fresh mint and coriander finely chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
2-3 tbsp fresh lemon or lime juice
  • Wash quinoa for 2 minutes in a strainer. this is necessary to remove a soapy residue on the seeds.
  • Add to quinoa 2 cups of water with cumin, coriander and salt and bring to boil.
  • Simmer and cook covered for 12- 15 minutes till the seeds absorb all the liquid. Fluff with a fork. Keep aside to cool. 
  • Combine cooked quinoa, beans and vegetables in a serving bowl.
  • Flavour with lemon juice and olive oil.
  • Cover for 15 minutes before serving to allow the flavours to blend together.

Recipe adapted from 'Loonyspoon Sisters'


  1. Is madir of kumaon same as quinoa. I am not sure could you please enlighten me.

    1. Hi Jyotsna,
      No its not the same. Quinoa is a pseudo-cereal that grows in Peru. It is also called as Goosefoot or Mother seed. This super seed holds an important place in vegetarian cooking and gets an A+ for protein quality. Hope this answers your question.
      For more recipes of quinoa go to