quick lunch – 5.7.12 – quinoa with tomatoes, feta, and mint

Maybe I caught a little bug, or maybe it’s just the last few weeks’ insane rush of activity catching up with me, but I’ve been feeling a bit under the weather these last two days. My symptoms (headache, stomach cramps and discomfort, and some serious fatigue) don’t point to anything specific that I can think of, but I’m hoping that taking a sick day today and spending most of it working from home in my pajamas will help me recover enough to return to school tomorrow.

Yes, working from home. Since our students only have a week and a half left of school, today was the day to send overdue notices home with kids who still haven’t returned their library books. I’m also working on suggested summer reading lists that will go home with the kids in the next few days. So while I did stay home sick, I’ve actually done about half of the work that I planned to accomplished at school today anyway. Which still puts me a half day (or more) behind….but that’s pretty normal. 🙂

Sick or well, a gal’s gotta eat. Breakfast was easy–reheating a pear oatmeal muffin and brewing some coffee–but we don’t really keep much easy lunch food around the house since we usually take dinner leftovers to work with us during the week…and today, we didn’t have any leftovers left. So, I had to come up with something quick that I could cook without much effort.

Quick starches in our pantry included pappardelle, couscous, and the last of the rainbow quinoa, so I gave Micah his pick. He chose the quinoa (surprising, because although he likes the flavor, he usually gripes about it getting stuck in his teeth).

This was the result:

the mint was the best part…

What’s in it:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided in half
  • 2/3 cup quinoa (we used rainbow)
  • 1-1/3 cup stock or broth (we used chicken)
  • 1/2 tablespoon sherry vinegar
  • 4 ounces feta, crumbled
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint, chopped

Step-by-step:

  • Heat 1/2 tablespoon olive oil in a small saucepan over medium heat.
  • Add the quinoa and toast it in the oil for about 5 minutes.
  • Add the stock/broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cover for about 20 minutes. (I forgot to set my timer and let ours go a little long. Oops.)
  • While the quinoa cooks, crumble your feta, dice your tomato, and chop your mint.
  • When the quinoa is finished cooking, remove it from the heat. Stir in the remaining 1/2 tablespoon olive oil, along with the vinegar, tomatoes, mint, and feta.
  • Divide between two bowls and enjoy! (We ate this warm, but I’ll bet it would be delicious chilled as well.)

I thought our lunch turned out pretty tasty, and Micah loved it. The feta, an Athens Locally Grown item from Greendale Farm in Madison, GA, was really delicious–Micah said it was the best feta he’d ever tasted! And I might just have to agree. That sharp, tangy, salty cheese made very good friends with the cool mint and the sweet tomatoes.

My favorite thing about this recipe is that I can see so many possibilities for yummy variations. Our lunch was kind of Greek/Mediterranean, but why not go Italian by replacing the sherry vinegar, mint, and feta with balsamic vinegar, basil, and cubes of fresh mozzarella? Or travel south of the border with fresh lime juice, cilantro, and crumbled cotija?

I’m still not back to 100%, but enjoying such an easy, delicious lunch definitely made me feel a little better. 🙂

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Categories: recipes | Tags: , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

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12 thoughts on “quick lunch – 5.7.12 – quinoa with tomatoes, feta, and mint

  1. Broken Anonymous

    I’m definitely going to have to add this to my must make list!

  2. Looks delicious! (And I happen to have all of the ingredients handy, which is perfect!)
    thanks
    anne

    • Thanks! It was. You’ll have to let me know how yours turns out! 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by!

  3. That looks very, very good. Can’t go wrong with mint, tomatoes and feta!

    Great lunch. I can’t believe that you made that while you were feeling under the weather! Impressive.

    • Well, it required almost no cooking, which certainly helped. 🙂 I am itching to try some variations now!

      • I was thinking tomatoes, feta, and fresh oregano. Or marjoram. Clearly you picked a winner when all I can think of is maybe swapping out the herb!

      • Yum! I love marjoram!

  4. Jessica

    I am so making this for dinner/lunch over the next week! I’ve never eaten or cooked quinoa before, so I’m excited. However, I think I will make the Italian version with mozzarella and basil.

    • Quinoa is great! Keep me posted on how it turns out! 🙂

      • Jessica

        Made it today for lunch. Delish! I used beef broth to boil the quinoa. The mozzarella got melty and gooey. The basil gave it a fragrant, beautiful smell and tasted so good!

      • Ooooh, that sounds delicious! So glad to hear the Italian variation is yummy, too. It’s hard to beat fresh basil. 🙂

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