Saturday, January 8, 2011

Girls' Night and Confetti Quinoa

I have a wonderful and very supportive group of girlfriends.  Since they are not vegan - or even vegetarian, for that matter - they always have a great time teasing me about my unique eating habits.  Most of the time we go out for wine and good eats, but when we have our own dinner parties, I get to leave my lunch box at home and make a dish that everyone will appreciate, and *hopefully* enjoy.  

My friend, Katie, and her husband recently bought a beautiful house in Fishers and invited us over for girls' night and to show off her new crib.  I was told to bring "a vegan-friendly pasta dish and a bottle of wine".  When I told her I was going wheat-free for a while, of course I got some friendly ribbing sent my way.  I wasn't sure what to make instead, but I'd been craving those quinoa stuffed mushrooms I made a couple weeks ago.  I decided to tweak that recipe and - voila!  Confetti Quinoa!

The girls claim they enjoyed it.  But don't take my word for it!

Katie decided she'd prefer fewer onions, and more salt.

Heather says, "Yum!"

Looks like a hit to me!

So, here's the recipe.  Let me know what you think!

Confetti Quinoa

*1 1/2 c. cooked quinoa
*2 Tbsp. olive oil
*1/2 large red onion, roughly chopped
*4 cloves garlic, minced
*1 large red pepper, roughly chopped
*2 apples (about 1 c.), roughly chopped
*1 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
*sea salt/pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 425.

Heat oil in skillet on medium heat; add onions, garlic, and red pepper and sautée until onions are translucent. Add quinoa and cook until heated through. Mix in apple and thyme, then season generously with salt/pepper.

Put quinoa mixture into baking dish.  Drizzle lightly with olive oil, and season with additional salt/pepper if desired.  Bake until top is golden and lightly crisp.

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