Kale and Quinoa Soup

Kale and Quinoa Soup

Today I made a pot of soup. I wanted to use some of the delicious fresh vegetables that I had available. I wanted it to be hearty and filling. I also wanted it to be healthy, and I wanted something that make good leftovers. It’s not a difficult soup to make, there’s time involved in preparing the vegetables and then you just allow it to cook.

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Ingredients:
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 white onion, diced
3 stalks celery, chopped
3 medium carrots, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon rosemary
2 zucchini quartered and sliced
2 cups green beans
2 cups vegetable broth
3 cups water
1 15 oz can tomato sauce
3/4 cup quinoa, rinsed
1 15 oz can black beans, rinsed
3 cups kale
salt and pepper, to taste

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Over medium high heat put the olive oil in a dutch oven or larger pot. Add the onions, carrots, celery and garlic. Allow them to sweat for 3-4 minutes. Add in the green beans, zucchini, rosemary and paprika. Next, add the vegetable broth, water, and tomato sauce. Add in the rinsed quinoa and black beans. Lower the heat to a medium low and allow it to cook for about 20 minutes. Finally add in the salt, pepper, and kale. Allow to cook another 5-7 minutes stirring all the kale in and allowing it to wilt.

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This will serve 6-8. Serve hot, and enjoy.

A few notes: You can use fresh or frozen beans. The quinoa is uncooked and just rinsed before going into the soup. I do remove the ribs from the kale, and shred it a bit with my hands. I added a bit of cheese on top of mine since I love cheese. I’m looking forward to enjoying it again for lunch tomorrow.

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Caprese Quinoa Salad

capraisequinoasalad22This salad is great for enjoying outside during the warmer months and is fast and easy to prepare. The quinoa can be prepared a day or two ahead of time even. Fresh basil and cherry tomatoes along with a bit of rice wine vinegar and extra virgin olive oil make this a light and fresh salad. I’ve served this as both a main dish, and as a side dish – it can compliment a lot of dishes well, and it makes for great leftovers for your next day’s lunch!

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Ingredients:
3 cups cooked quinoa to package directions (1 cup dry)
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
8 oz fresh mozzarella pearls (or cut into 1/2″ pieces)
1/4 cup fresh basil, finely chopped
salt and pepper, to taste

capraisequinoasalad3In a large bowl place the cooked quinoa with the rice wine vinegar and olive oil, stirring until the quinoa is coated. Add in the tomatoes, mozzarella, fresh basil, then add a pinch of salt and pepper. Mix together well. Serve chilled. Serves 4 as a main dish 6-8 as a side dish.