Friday, February 7, 2014

Fruit and Almond Quinoa with Apple Vinaigrette

This Fruit & Almond Quinoa with Apple Vinaigrette was a nice change in our usual dinner routine. It was simple and quick for a weeknight meal - and it's healthy!!

Fruit and Almond Quinoa with Apple Vinaigrette #quinoa #fruit #healthy

Brian and I have discussed making more conscious decisions about what we eat. As the person who does the grocery-shopping, meal planning and meal preparation, I feel this falls mostly on me - and I'm ok with that! Of course, Brian's ok with it until we actually have to do it - he's still a little hesitant to actually do what we say we need to do. It's easy to say it, not so easy to follow through.

I have to admit that my meat-loving family was not thrilled when I told them we were having quinoa for dinner. I kept having to explain "what it is" and how to say it (keen-wa). My family seemed less than enthused with my answer. Brian asked me more than once, "so there's no meat in there?" Nope ... no meat. 

Quinoa is a complete protein source and is full of nutrients. It is a good source of fiber and calcium. it is also gluten-free and easily digested. No amount of touting it's health benefits was going to change my family's mind! I was still going to give it a shot!

I grew up being exposed to all kinds of things. I have eaten things that would give some of y'all the heebie jeebies. Heck, some of it gives me the heebie jeebies just thinking about it! HA! I'm fair game to most anything once .... one bite. Truth be told, it's more difficult for some people to step outside their comfort zone and try something new. Brian is one of those people. There's nothing wrong with it, by the way! I love him just the same! :) It just means I have to be more creative sometimes - or not answer his questions when he asks me "what's in here" or "what's this called" ..... Oh, yeah, I totally go there! And sometimes, it's even harder for these people to acknowledge that they even might like something they thought they didn't! ;)

Although slightly kicking and screaming, my family tried it and didn't think it was too bad. I don't think they're willing to give up all of their meat just yet! Not that it is my intention, but swapping out a meal here and there with a better and healthier choice - I'm sure I'll get some grumbles for awhile. 

Fruit and Almond Quinoa with Apple Vinaigrette #quinoa #fruit #healthy

Fruit & Almond Quinoa with Apple Vinaigrette
Printable recipe
Yield: 4 servings

2 cups water
1 cup quinoa
1 small red apple, cored and chopped
1 small green apple, cored and chopped
1 cup red grapes, halved
1 cup green grapes, halved
½ cup raisins
½ cup (2 oz.) slivered almonds

For the dressing:
¼ cup apple juice
1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar 
1 tbsp. honey
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
Pinch salt and pepper
2 tbsp. olive oil

Rinse quinoa. In a medium saucepan, bring the water and quinoa to a boil. Cover. Cook on medium-low for 10-15 minutes, or until all of the water is absorbed. Remove from heat. Fluff the quinoa. 

Place the quinoa in a medium bowl. Add the apples, grapes, raisins and almonds. Mix gently. Set aside. 

In a small bowl, combine the dressing ingredients. Whisk until thoroughly combined. Pour the dressing over quinoa and fruit mixture. Mix gently. Serve immediately or refrigerate and serve cold.

Fruit and Almond Quinoa with Apple Vinaigrette #quinoa #fruit #healthy

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I hope you enjoy! Shared at thesefun parties!

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