So there were these really bad wildfires a few years back that were spreading all over Southern California. They were consuming buildings and homes and miles of land from Los Angeles to San Diego. Colin (my then crush) had been evacuated from his home as a precaution and when my roommate heard he was looking for a place to crash, she offered up our couch.
I was FREAKING OUT. My crush. Was coming to stay at my place. For an unspecified amount of time until the evacuation orders were lifted. Thank God my house was clean, my nails were done and my fridge was stocked with all that I needed to make my go-to greek quinoa salad. I was so nervous as I began to quickly cook before he arrived- (I wanted the house to smell amazing and really put out the wifey material vibes, you know?) I poured myself a glass of red wine to calm my nerves and started to sip on it while my chicken was cooking. I must have had a little too much because when it came time to add my salad dressing on top at the very end, I accidentally doused the entire meal with over half the bottle of red wine vinegar.
I was so horrified!!! and now totally panicking because he had just walked through the door! I tried to play it off as though I had no idea he was coming over and asked if he just so happened to be hungry. You know, all casual. He dove right in to my vinegar soaked greek salad without hesitattion. I was like welp. this is it. He’s gonna think Im super gross and weird and he’s going to have to politely find a way to spit out the food or pretend like he’s not that hungry after all. Would you have guessed the guy loved it??? Like LOVED it. Kept asking “what kind of dressing is this? did you make this yourself?” I was shook. Turns out he’s the kind of freak of nature that takes apple cider vinegar shots in the morning for fun and wasn’t put off by the pungent flavor in the slightest. He was actually obsessed it. Meant to be right?A few days passed and the fires subsided and as he packed up his things to return home, he asked me out on our very first date.
Now knowing all that, can you blame me that this meal is an all-time favorite for me to make? Even years later now as his wife- there’s just something about the sight of this dish that takes me back to that day and reminds me, even if I do get distracted and totally screw everything up along the way … some fires you just weren’t meant to put out.
Greek Quinoa Salad
Cook time: 20 mins. Prep time: 5 mins. Total Time: 25 mins.
I serve this with chicken breast but you don’t need it. The Quinoa is PACKED with protein 🙂
What you’ll need:
– 2 cups Quinoa (serves 2-4)
-1 large Cucumber
– 3/4 cup pitted Klamata Olives
– 1 cup Grape Tomatoes- 3/4 cup Feta Cheese
– 1/2 cup Red wine vinegar
What to do: – Prepare your quinoa following the instructions on the bag. My trader joes Quinoa calls for 1 cup quinoa to 2 cups water. I like to substitute the water for chicken broth if I’m feeling fancy.
– Grill your chicken. I recommend keeping your seasoning light and refreshing. The salad has lots of flavor. I love a lemon pepper blend.
– While your quinoa is cooking and the chicken is grilling, slice up your tomatoes, olives and cucumbers. I like a rough chop, with uneven but bite size pieces.
– When your quinoa is done cooking (approx. 15 mins) Add your veggies and season with salt, pepper and our favorite ingredient- red wine vinegar 🙂
– Mix the salad together and sprinkle feta cheese on top.
– Plate your chicken and scoop big spoonfuls of your quinoa salad on top of your chicken like an over done garnish. – Enjoy!
Do you have any meals that bring back major memories?? Comment below and tell me everything!