Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Southwest Quinoa Burrito Bowl...Salad

Southwest Quinoa Burrito Bowl: Loves Food, Loves to Eat
Some of my gal pals are really into the no-salad-salad, as they call it. The no-salad-salad is basically a big bowl of salady stuff that isn't leafy green and lettuce-like. They throw in a whole bunch of veggies, beans, and baby corn. 

Southwest Quinoa Burrito Bowl: Loves Food, Loves to Eat

Ugh. Can I tell you something? I hate baby corn. It totally freaks me out. When I was a little kid I loved it...until one time, at a fancy restaurant (ahem, it was the O'Callahan's restaurant at the Shilo Inn in The Dalles, OR... which I thought was like, the fanciest of wasn't) I yoinked a baby corn off of Mel's plate when she wasn't looking, and it was pickled or something, and it tasted awful, and I threw up. I've been super anti baby corn ever since that day. PS. this is totally not food-blog friendly, but I have a lot of stories that end with "and then I threw up." 

Southwest Quinoa Burrito Bowl: Loves Food, Loves to Eat
But I digress, this post really has nothing to do with baby corn or my wimpy stomach. It's all about no-salad-salad.

Southwest Quinoa Burrito Bowl: Loves Food, Loves to Eat
So anyway, whenever I try to make the standard no-salad-salad, I feel like it doesn't come out quite as good as when my friends do it. It feels like a big, jumbled, incoherent mess. That's why I like themed no-salad-salads. Like Greek-style salads loaded with chickpeas, cucumbers, tomatoes, and olives. Or, my favorite: a no-salad-salad with southwest flair. Otherwise known as a burrito bowl. Can we just call it a Southwest Quinoa Burrito Bowl…Salad? 

Southwest Quinoa Burrito Bowl: Loves Food, Loves to Eat
This one has so much goodness in it: sweet corn fresh off the cob (not the baby variety, thankyouverymuch), avocado, green onions, tomatoes, cilantro, black beans, and cotija cheese, all doused with fresh squeezed lime juice. You could definitely eat this as is. Or you could make it even better by tossing it with quinoa and a creamy southwest sauce. I vote you do that. I vote you do that right now. 

Southwest Quinoa Burrito Bowl: Loves Food, Loves to Eat

Southwest Quinoa Burrito Bowl Salad
Serves 4

Creamy Southwest Sauce
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon honey
1 tablespoon water
1/2 teaspoon of each: cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano
Splash hot sauce (I use Tapatio) 
Juice from half a lime
Salt & pepper to taste

For sauce, whisk together sour cream through hot sauce, until smooth and creamy. Save the other lime half for salad. Salt & Pepper to taste. 

1 cup uncooked quinoa
1 can black beans, drained & rinsed
1 large tomato, diced
1 avocado, diced
Fresh corn off the cob from 1 ear
2-3 green onions, sliced
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
1/3 cup crumbled cotija cheese
Juice from half a lime
Creamy Southwest Sauce

Cook quinoa: Rinse until water runs clear, drain. Add to a medium pot with 2 cups of water and a pinch of salt and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium low and simmer 15 to 20 minutes, until water is absorbed. Fluff with a fork and cool before mixing with salad. 

Stir together black beans through cotija cheese, and toss with lime juice. Add cooled quinoa, and stir until just combined (gently, so you don't moosh up the avocado). Salt and pepper to taste. To eat, either mix in the sauce, or add sauce to each serving. 

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