In the summer, my weekly meal plan could quite easily be:
Monday: tomato-basil _________
Tuesday: tomato-basil _________
Wednesday: tomato-basil __________
You get the the picture. It's just such a timeless and perfect combination that I could combine it with pretty much any protein, carb, or veggie and be pretty pleased with the results. Since I've been all about quinoa lately, it only seemed natural to combine my two current obsessions into one kick-butt dish.
This tomato-basil quinoa was kind of thrown together using what we had in the pantry, and it turned out really well. I had originally intended for it to be kind of like a salad, but it ended up being more reminiscent of a pasta dish. It really reminded me of pasta with a simple marinara sauce. I loved it and kept going back to to the pot for spoonfuls as we cleaned up the kitchen. Caroline loved it, and Joey loved it too. I even pureed some for Smith, and it was a hit with him as well!
If you're looking for a fresh and fast summer side dish, this is a great option. It would be great with pretty much any grilled meat - steak, chicken, Italian sausage, fish, etc. Or if you're looking to a healthier alternative to spaghetti, this is a great choice. Customize it by mixing in some grilled veggies for a complete meal, stir in some cubes of mozzarella for a caprese-like dish... the possibilities are pretty much endless!
a Pink Parsley Original
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1/2 yellow onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 8 oz. can tomato sauce
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained
- 2/3 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
- 1-2 tomatoes, cored, seeded, and diced
- 2 Tbs chopped fresh basil
Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about one minute. Season with salt and pepper.
Add the tomato sauce and water to the saucepan and stir in the quinoa. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat, cover, and cook until the quinoa is tender but still chewy, and white spiral-like threads appear around each grain, about 15 minutes.
Remove from heat and allow to sit about 5 minutes. Stir in the Parmesan cheese, tomatoes, and basil, and season with salt and pepper if necessary. Serve.