Occasionally on Monday mornings I meet a group of expat women for coffee. It is a delightful group, with endlessly entertaining stories about the challenges and joys of living in a foreign place. There is something about this scene of English-speaking women, drinking lattes while talking about the daily surprises of life in Thailand that puts things into perspective. It also creates this comfortable sense of something familiar blending into something completely foreign.
I likewise find that Asian flavors are gently blending into those that are much more familiar in my cooking. Although I like to cook the same things I always have, there’s no resisting the limes, rice vinegars and green onions that sneak into my shopping bag and beg to be tossed into every dish.
This simple salad with just a touch of those Asian flavors has been happily packing itself up for lunch leftovers all week, so it’s worth making a big batch.
Honey-Lime Quinoa with Avocados
- 3 cups low-sodium vegetable broth (or water)
- 2 cups uncooked quinoa
- 6 scallions (green onions), white and green parts, roughly chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
- 1/2 cup fresh squeezed lime juice (about 2 limes)
- 1 Tbsp. honey
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted
- 1 avocado, sliced
- Bring broth to a boil in a large pot with a tight-fitting lid. Meanwhile, toast quinoa in a large, dry saute pan over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. When quinoa turns golden in spots and starts to smell toasted and nutty, about 5 minutes, remove from heat. Pour quinoa into boiling broth, reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and allow to simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to rest, covered, for 5 minutes more. Fluff with a fork and add scallions, stirring to combine.
- Whisk together olive oil, soy sauce, lime juice and honey in a small bowl. Slowly pour liquids over quinoa, tossing to coat. Just before serving, add almonds and avocado, and stir to combine. Serve immediately or refrigerate and serve chilled.