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Summer bounty meets a supergrain in this quick quinoa salad


The best seasonal cook I know is Well+Good’s food contributor, Jerusha Klemperer, who’s also the Program Manager at Slow Food USA. She believes that nature invents perfect food combinations—like strawberries and rhubarb, which ripen simultaneously.

Her latest creation turns quinoa, her favorite whole grain, into a satisfying summer meal using three of-the-moment staples from the farmer’s market—spring garlic, shelled peas, and radishes.

“I like that quinoa is a complete protein,” says Klemperer, meaning it contains all of the essential amino acids. (She also liked that there happened to be a stash of it in her pantry when she returned home from the Farmer’s Market.)

Brooke Kalanick, ND, MS, a nutritionist and co-author of Ultimate You: A 4-Phase Total Body Makeover, says quinoa’s higher in protein than many whole grains, making it a great grain to reach for. One cup has 8g of protein and 5g of fiber. It’s also gluten-free, says Kalanick. “Gluten is an inflammatory food for most people,” she warns. “And many grains such as barley, rye, couscous, and even most oats contain gluten.”

To make this recipe, I was able to procure all the produce at just one farmer’s stand. I was worried the garlic would overpower the dish, but it, along with the onion, created a subtle, savory background and allowed the sweet peas and crispy radishes to take center stage.

Quinoa with spring garlic, radishes, and peas
(2 small servings)

Simultaneously ripe ingredients should end up in the same salad bowl, says Jerusha Klemperer

3/4 cup quinoa, well rinsed
3 pieces minced spring garlic, white bulb up to light green
1 small onion minced
3-4 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup white wine
1 cup water
2 cups shelled peas
1/2 bunch radishes, trimmed, sliced in half

1. Saute onion and spring garlic in 2 tbsp of olive oil over medium heat

2. Add a pinch of salt to onion-garlic mix, as you soften until translucent

3. Add the quinoa (which you have already rinsed several times)

4. Add the wine, bring to a boil, then simmer for a few minutes until wine evaporates

5. Add the water, bring to boil, then cover, lower heat to simmer

6. Let cook for 20 minutes or so

7. While that’s happening, heat the remaining olive oil in another pan

8. Also, bring some salted water up to a boil (this water is not in the recipe above)

9. Cook peas for 3 minutes

10. Brown radishes in heated oil, a minute or two on each side

11. When quinoa is cooked, and when peas and radishes are cooked, mix ’em all together