Kale & Red Quinoa Salad

Ancient wisdom says that the largest meal of the day should be had at lunch time – as opposed to dinner, which is what we’re all accustomed to in this culture. Our bodies, you see, are deeply intertwined with the natural world. Lunch time is the hottest part of the day, which is also when our digestive fire is at it’s peak – making it easier on the digestive system to process our food.

The trouble is, most of us work during lunch time and it’s so dang hard to prepare a lunch every day. Recently I’ve tried to cultivate a habit to prepare lunch the night before so I’m not stuck listening to my stomach growl – or worse, reaching for those mini candy bars that are but a few feet away.

This salad is an excellent starting point for turning lunch into the most important meal of the day (breakfast takes a back seat, but is NOT ignored). If nothing else, prepare this salad the night before and take a boatload of it to work. It’s satisfying, it’s yummy and it’s good for ya.

Kale & Red Quinoa Salad
1 cup red quinoa, rinsed in a fine sieve
1 bunch curly kale
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups cooked fresh or frozen corn kernels
1 cup halved grape or cherry tomatoes
2 tablespoons lemon juice, or more, to taste
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 cup minced fresh parsley, or more, to taste
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1/4 cup toasted sunflower seeds

Combine the quinoa with 2 cups water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a rapid simmer, then lower the heat, cover and simmer gently for about 15 minutes until the stock is absorbed. Allow the quinoa to cool to room temperature.

Place the kale in a large bowl. Pour the olive oil onto the kale, reserving a small amount to rub between your hands. Rub your hands together, then massage the kale for about 30-60 seconds, until it turns bright green.

Add cooled quinoa to the serving bowl along with the remaining ingredients. Stir well, sprinkle with sunflower seeds, and serve.

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