2 Bunches asparagus (steamed and cut into 1 inch pieces)
1/4 cup basil (chopped)
1 lemon (juiced)
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic (minced)
salt and pepper (to taste)
This quinoa salad makes a great side dish to chicken or fish or stands alone as a vegetarian main. Add a can of chickpeas or white beans for even more protein and fibre. The salad can also be made a day or two ahead of time.
Heat 1 tsp olive oil in a non stick skillet or saucepan over medium high heat and sauté onion until softened, about two minutes. Add quinoa to pan and sauté until toasted, about 5 minutes. Add water and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer until most of the water is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Cover with lid and let stand an extra 5 minutes. Remove from heat and place in a large bowl.
Add dates, remaining onion, pecans, orange sections, asparagus, and basil and toss to combine.
Combine all ingredients. Add to quinoa and toss to coat.