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If there’s one food that has skyrocketed in popularity in the last 5 years, it’s avocado.
I swear, millennials flock to this creamy green machine like bees to honey…
Avocado toast. Avocado chocolate pudding. Avocado in smoothies. Avocado facials.
Memes, merch, you name it — if it’s got anything to do with avocado, it’ll be Instagrammed.
And full disclosure, I love it. I make the meanest guacamole this side of the Mississippi, so I fully support our cultural obsession.
So I thought tonight, I’d tempt your tastebuds with one of my favorite spring dishes: my Deconstructed Guacamole Quinoa Pilaf.
All the bright, fresh flavors of guacamole, made into a hearty dish!
And it’s gluten free, vegan, and Paleo!
One great thing about this dish is that it’s totally customizable. If quinoa isn’t your “thing” — you can substitute! — Brown rice, wild rice (YUM!), millet, buckwheat, pasta, zoodles, — even lentils! It’s totally up to you! I like quinoa, because it’s a complete protein 🙂 – And this brand is my favorite because it’s pre-rinsed.
And it’s SUPER easy and SUPER quick to prepare!
Here’s What You Need: (Serves 3-4)
1 cup quinoa, cooked in 2 cups vegetable stock, per package directions
2 handfuls of cherry tomatoes, halved
1 red pepper, diced
1/4 red onion, finely minced – or grated
1 garlic clove, grated
1 avocado, diced
big bunch cilantro, chopped
juice of 2 limes (divided)
1 green onion, sliced
8 black olives, sliced
Tortilla chips (optional garnish)
Cook your quinoa quinoa per package directions.
Meanwhile, in a bowl, place the diced avocado and toss it with the juice of 1/2 a lime salt. ((Pro tip: Nuke your whole, un-cut lime in the microwave for 30 seconds, and it will make the juicing process SO much easier!)) Place in the refrigerator. In another bowl, combine your tomatoes, pepper, onion, garlic, half of your cilantro, salt and the juice of half a lime. Toss them together and set aside.
In a little dish (I used a Pyrex measuring cup), combine the juice and zest of 1/2 a lime, 1 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil, salt, and the sliced white and light green parts of a green onion. (Reserve the dark green top slices for garnish).
When the quinoa finishes cooking, fluff it with a fork, and “fluff in” the tomato mixture, remaining cilantro, and lime/green onion sauce.
Serve, topped with a mound of diced avocado, black olives, green onion, cilantro, and tortilla chips as a garnish.
What a fiesta of a forkful! I mean, holy cow guys — out of this world!
It really hit the spot. It was light. It was fresh. It was unbelievably delicious.
There were 3 things really working in its favor: 1) The textures. 2) The flavors. And 3) The beautiful colors! Let’s start with the textures: Quinoa is such a super food — not only because of its high nutrient content and complete protein status, but also because of its fantastic flavor and texture! It is deep and nutty and “pops” in your mouth! It’s so fun to eat! That with the crunchy peppers, chewy olives, and the juicy bursting tomatoes, paired with the creamy, cool avocado makes it so enjoyable.
Next, the flavors! The first flavor that hits you is the bright *zing* from the lime, and then the fresh cilantro chimes in! The peppers are sweet, the tomatoes give a little sweet acidity, and the olives provide a little salty pop. This is all rounded out by the buttery and fresh avocado. A symphony for your palate.
Finally, this dish is just aesthetically beautiful. The dark quinoa brings the drama to the plate, highlighted by the bright red peppers, lemony green avocado, black olives and the bright green cilantro. Talk about a plate that’s fit for Instagram!! 🙂
What are some of your favorite ways to eat avocado!?
“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5
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