Quinoa makes a splendid salad. It is substantial, easy to prepare, very adaptable, and allows plenty of scope for personal experimentation. It's good in winter as well as summer. The quantities I've suggested here would be enough for four people. If cooking for two, simply halve the ingredients. These can also be varied according to your own personal taste. Other fruits could be used, or spring onions, garlic, eggs and cheeses, parsley and other fresh herb. Here are the ingredients I used.
Quinoa, cooked in advance. Rinse 110 g (4oz) quinoa in a fine sieve under cold running water. Put in saucepan. Cover with 300ml (or just over ½ pint) of cold water. Bring to boiling point. Reduce to a low heat. Simmer for 10 minutes. Turn the heat off, cover the quinoa and leave it to absorb all the liquid. It is then ready to use. Use as much of the quinoa as you need for this dish and keep any left over for another occasion.
Apple, one, any sweet eating apple, peeled, cored and chopped into pieces
Grapes, sweet black, a dozen or so, halved
Tomatoes, small, half-dozen, halved
Cucumber, one quarter, peeled, seeded, chopped into chunks
Black olives, about a dozen
Courgettes, two, the small yellow variety in this instance, quickly blanched in boiling water and then in cold water
Olive oil, about 2 tablespoons
Juice of half-a-lemon
Salt and pepper
Put the pre-cooked quinoa in a salad bowl and add all the vegetables and fruit, except the pine nuts. Mix together. Then pour on the olive oil and lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste, and blend in. Finally garnish with the pine nuts. Chill in fridge before serving.