...Mushroom Quinoa Salad

This salad, despite being vegetarian, is a refreshing, satisfying meal in itself with the meaty portobello, nutty quinoa, creamy navy beans and bright tangy lemon juice.  It is easy to make and if you have enough leftover, it makes the perfect work lunch the next day.
Ingredients (Yields ~6 servings)
-3 large portobello mushrooms, sliced thickly
-2 cups sliced white button mushrooms
-1 cup sliced cremini mushrooms
-5 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
-2 cups rinsed, canned navy beans (=1 can)
-1 cup quinoa
-2 cups chicken stock (water can be used instead)
-5 cups spinach or arugula
-1 lemon, cut into half
-Extra virgin olive oil
-Salt and pepper to taste


1. In a large pan, drizzle about 2 tbsp olive oil over medium-high heat and place the sliced portobello mushrooms in to cook.  Wait until they are browned before flipping them over, approximately 2 minutes.  Continue to cook until the mushrooms are soft to the touch.  Take them off the pan and set aside.

2.  Cook the quinoa by placing it in a small pot with the chicken stock and 2 cloves of sliced garlic over high heat to boil.  Once the liquid is boiling, turn it down to low.  Cook the quinoa for approximately 15 minutes with the lid on.

3.  Fry the remaining white button and cremini mushrooms with the remaining 3 cloves of sliced garlic over medium heat with 2 tbsp olive oil until cooked.  Set aside into salad mixing bowl.

3. Lightly toast the rinsed navy beans in the pan over low-medium heat with 1 tbsp olive oil (about 2 minutes) and place into the mixing bowl with the mushrooms.

4. Once the quinoa is cooked, cool it slightly before adding it to the mixing bowl.  If you don't mind your greens slightly wilted, you can add the greens right away (this is what we did).

5. Dress the salad with a generous amount of olive oil, salt and pepper, depending on your tastes.  Squeeze the juice of half a lemon into the salad and toss.  

6.  Serve the salad with a 3-4 slices of portobello mushroom.  Sprinkle them with a pinch of salt and give the salad a final drizzle of olive oil.



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