Toasted Quinoa Salad with Shrimp and Edamame

Toasted Quinoa Salad with Shrimp and EdamameAs a follow-up to the Southwestern-style Quinoa and Black Beans, here’s a nutrient-dense, protein-packed salad to try. It’s fresh in taste, texture and color with a hint of Asian flavor.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 lb. raw shrimp, frozen or fresh (41-50 shrimp/pound)
  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked quinoa, rinsed well
  • 5 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. ginger, grated
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen edamame, shelled
  • 1 c. scallions, sliced thinly and diagonally (about 1 bunch)
  • 1/2 large red bell pepper, diced small
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
  • 4 1/2 tsp. tamari (or soy sauce), reduced-sodium and gluten-free
  • 1 tsp. Aji-Mirin (sweet cooking rice seasoning) – can be found in the Asian foods of the supermarket with the rice wine vinegars
  • 4 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons canola oil, divided
  • 1/3 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp. toasted sesame oil
  • 3 cups water
  • Salt to taste (optional)

PREPARATION:
1. Place in a mesh strainer and rinse well with water:

  • 1 1/2 c. quinoa, uncooked

2. Toss in medium bowl. Set aside and let marinate.

Honey Mango and Scallop Salad

Honey Mangos
Honey mangos are sweet, string-less and full of flavor.

Salads make a refreshing, light meal as well as a nice starter.  Here’s a tropical seafood salad that is sure to please! The Honey Mangos  give this salad a fantastic sweet flavor while the jalapeno pepper and scallops add a lively kick.

The Honey Mango (a.k.a. Manila or Ataulfo Mango) is generally available in the spring and fall. These jewels have a smooth, string-less flesh and literally melt in your mouth. The contrast between the sweet and spicy flavors and the smooth and crunchy textures make this salad a real delight.

When selecting honey mangos, be sure to pick ones with a yellow-orange color (not light green or with brown marks). They should give  slightly when you give them a little bit of a squeeze.  Mangos are great sources of fiber, Vitamins A and C.

Vitamin C is vital for collagen maintenance. Collagen is the fibrous structural protein that gives your skin its strength and elasticity. Wrinkles occur when collagen in the skin degrades. Vitamin A is an antioxidant that attacks free radicals that break down your skin’s elastin and collagen which are the key components of youthful firm skin. Great reasons to go back for seconds!   Continue reading “Honey Mango and Scallop Salad”

Grilled Arctic Char with Cilantro Island Sauce

Artic char flesh resembles salmon
Arctic char flesh resembles salmon, but has a milder taste

Icelandic Arctic char, also known as salmon trout, is rich in heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.   If you haven’t tasted Artic char, it’s well worth giving it a try.  Arctic char tastes similar to salmon (even looks like salmon with its pinkish-orange flesh), but is milder in flavor.

Arctic char is an excellent choice if you don’t like a strong tasting fish, but want to include fish in your diet for its health benefits.  Be sure not to overcook this versatile delicacy or you’ll lose its natural moistness.  A quick grilling on both sides is all you need.   Continue reading “Grilled Arctic Char with Cilantro Island Sauce”

Cajun Coconut Curried Shrimp

Here’s an easy meal that’s bursting with taste and texture.  This dish blends the signature flavors of Louisiana, Thailand, and India into a single pot filled with colorful veggies and shrimp.  The light coconut milk adds rich and creamy goodness to this flavorful curry while the Cajun seasoning adds a nice subtle ‘zing’.

Shrimp is high in protein and very low in fat
Shrimp is high in protein and very low in fat

Shrimp is a good source of protein and iron.  It’s very low in saturated fat although high in cholesterol content (200 mg.* in 3.5 oz, or about 12 large shrimp).  However, scientific research dismisses the link between high cholesterol and shellfish and may, in fact, raise levels of HDL (good cholesterol).  Shrimp also contains good-for-the-skin selenium, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids which can counteract the effects of premature aging.

*The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends a maximum intake of 300 mg. of cholesterol per day.

NOTE: Vegetarians can substitute shrimp with tofu for a flavorful, satisfying main dish. Continue reading “Cajun Coconut Curried Shrimp”

Grilled Salmon Cakes Salad

Live butter lettuce stays fresh and crispy for days
Live butter lettuce stays fresh and crispy for days

When you’re in the mood for a fresh all-in-one meal, this dish is an easy fix.  It’s colorful, rich in skin-lovin’ omega-3’s, and delicious.  The creamy avocados and the tender, slightly sweet flavor of the  butter lettuce (a.k.a. Boston lettuce) combine scrumptiously with these zesty, delicate salmon cakes.  Salmon cakes are typically 30% bread or cracker crumbs, but these cakes don’t contain a lot of starchy fillers — so you’ll get more of the true flavor and texture of the salmon.  Perfect for a hot summer day!   Continue reading “Grilled Salmon Cakes Salad”