Quinoa Mandarin and Feta Salad

Quinoa Mandarin and Feta Salad
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So, I had to chuckle a bit at all of the comments and emails I got yesterday, after I posted a little tutorial on Quinoa. I have to admit when I set out to write the post, I wondered how it would be received since Quinoa is a bit of a random and unfamiliar ingredient. Most of you were happy to see the introduction of something new and very healthy. Others were worried that I was going to turn all health food crazy on you. 

Rest assured. 

This blog is about great tasting food in all it’s shapes and sizes! Fabulous tasting food that will please the majority of the people it’s served to. Healthy…and unhealthy alike.  A VARIETY of wonderful recipes are what I hope to provide for you all.  So don’t be worried if you see recipes on the healthier side sometimes. It doesn’t mean I’ve abandoned butter and sugar. 🙂 How could I! They have never done me wrong. 
Except for my exceedingly grand hips and fierce love handles. 
Do you see why a girl like me needs need a little Quinoa in her life?
A person cannot live on butter and sugar alone, my friends.
Thanks for understanding. 
You are so very kind.

That said, today’s Quinoa recipe is super healthy and fabulous to make for yourself to enjoy. You could make it and serve it to your lady and gentlemen friends for lunch. You could make it and snack on it while you stare down the chocolate bars lurking in your pantry. You could make it and count your blessing for fabulous tasting food that is good for you. 

Or, you could just stare at this recipe and wonder when I’ll be getting back to butter, sugar and white flour for goodness sake!
How does Monday morning work for you and your schedule? I’ll be here ready to share a recipe your kids will devour and ask you to make again and again. But for today, my friends. A bit of Quinoa.

This salad tastes best if you build each serving individually and pour the dressing on just before it’s served. 

Let’s make it!

Quinoa Mandarin and Feta Salad
Time: 15 minutes
Yield: 4 main course servings
Recipe from Jamie Cooks It Up!

Dressing:
1/3 C Mayonnaise (I used Best Foods Light)
1/4 C mandarin orange juice
2 T soy sauce
1 T balsamic vinegar
1 t ginger
2 T sugar
1 t honey mustard

Salad Ingredients:
3 C spinach
2 (11 ounce) cans mandarin oranges
1 pint grape tomatoes
2 green onions, chopped
1 (8 ounce) can water chestnuts
2 mini sweet peppers
1 C Chinese noodles
3/4 C feta cheese

1. Toss all dressing ingredients in a small food processor, blender or immersion blender cup (which is what you are looking at here.) Blend them all together until nice and smooth.


2. Chop 3 cups of spinach into small pieces. (This picture is only enough for 1 serving.) Divide the spinach into fourths

and lay each fourth onto its own lovely plate.
3. Arrange some mandarin oranges over the top of the spinach…


followed by some beautiful juicy grape tomatoes.


4. Drain the can of water chestnuts and add some to each plate.


5. Chop some sweet orange or red peppers and place those babies in your salad.



6. Dish about 1/4-1/3 cup quinoa onto each plate. 
Top it with some crunchy Chinese noodles…


and a good sprinkling of feta cheese.


7. Pour some dressing over the top and a healthy, fresh, light and delightful plate of wonder is born. 

Enjoy!



Post a comment!

9 Comments

  1. 1
    Anonymous
    January 12, 2012 at 4:31 pm

    I love quinoa and am so excited to try this recipe! My boys eat quinoa almost as good as rice, they think it is interesting. And it is so good for you! Thanks for listing this!

  2. 2
    January 12, 2012 at 5:11 pm

    This looks like it has so much flavor, yum

  3. 3
    January 12, 2012 at 5:17 pm

    Thanks for keepin' us healthy Jamie. 🙂 I truly loved yesterday's comment about leaving the healthy recipes to those other websites and just doing regular recipes on here. Ha ha ha. Sorry, I found that super funny. Can't please 'em all, can ya? I think you do quite a fantastic job of posting something for everyone. Must be a mother of 5 or something…

  4. 4
    Sadie
    January 12, 2012 at 6:19 pm

    Thank you this beautiful salad recipe. When I saw your tutorial yesterday, I couldn't wait for today's post. Thank you for the variety of recipes which always look delicious.

  5. 5
    January 12, 2012 at 6:31 pm

    Mmmm…looks delish!!! The healthy part is a bonus!

  6. 6
    Anonymous
    January 12, 2012 at 6:35 pm

    May I be so bold as to suggest that you purchase the small size package from your local store before spending dollars on a large size that you might never use ? Try it out first before you have alot invested! I tried it once, found it horrible, then had it another way and totally loved it. You have to know how to use it, and the texture, just simply isn't for everyone…good for you or not !

  7. 7
    January 12, 2012 at 7:20 pm

    I love Quinoa, and Love your variety of recipes. I am always looking for ways to infuse healthy grains in my families diet! Healthy food can taste good too! I think sometimes people dont think thats true! But, you'll show them! Thanks again for a great blog!

  8. 8
    March 7, 2012 at 2:43 am

    I made this for dinner tonight because my family loves quinoa & we had all these ingredience on hand. Yummy yumm-o!!! Everyone loved it. My children range in age from 10-18, & we have an exchange student living with us who loved it too.

  9. 9
    April 5, 2012 at 11:06 pm

    We really enjoyed this a month or so ago when I first made it. I just put it on this month's menu to have it for the second time. I was going to put Hawaiian Haystacks on the menu, but this seems so much healthier!

    I think I remember subbing some of the mayo for either fat-free yogurt or sour cream and having it work out just fine, so I'll do that again.

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