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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Quinoa with Nectarine and Basil

I had not had a single nectarine all summer and they were calling my name in the grocery store, looking all big, juicy, and summery.  But for some reason I knew that even if purchased with the best of intentions I would never end up sitting on my couch, eating the nectarine all on its own as a snack.  Incorporating the nectarine into a recipe would need to be the way to go for me and since this one required little effort, it was the winner.  It wasn't until I started cooking that I realized I was out of couscous so I substituted quinoa.  Guess what?  I think I made it better.  Take that, fancy magazine recipe makers!

The sweet flavor of the nectarine and orange juice is unexpected in a side dish.  It's citrus, though, which is a different kind of sweet so it doesn't feel out of place at suppertime.  I think because the flavors of the citrus and stone fruit are light and bright it helped to use quinoa, which is not as starchy [aka heavy] as the pearled couscous.  This one is great at room temp and since there's no dairy/mayo, it will keep all day so I would recommend it as a picnic/potluck dish.

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