Chickpea and Quinoa Salad in Sweet Pepper Bowls
These appealing pepper bowls are filling enough to serve as a main dish for any festive summer meal. Perfectly portable, they make a wonderful picnic entree. Laura Theodore also has a multi-course menu for vegans looking for picnic ideas.
- 1 cup quinoa, rinsed thoroughly and drained
- 2 cups filtered or spring water
- 1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained and rinsed
- ½ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- 1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
- ¾ cup kalamata olives, pitted and sliced
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more as needed
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder, plus more as needed
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt, plus more as needed
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric
- 4 large sweet red, yellow, or orange peppers
- Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, for garnish (optional)
- Put the quinoa and water in a medium sauce pan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Decrease the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 15 to 17 minutes, until all of the liquid is absorbed. Fluff with a fork.
- Transfer to a medium bowl. Let cool (see note). Put the cooled quinoa, chickpeas, parsley, tomatoes, and olives in a large bowl.
- Put the lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, chili powder, salt, and turmeric in a small bowl and whisk briskly until smooth. Pour the dressing over the quinoa mixture and stir gently to incorporate.
- Taste and add more chili powder, salt, and/or olive oil if needed. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours to let the flavors blend.
- Right before serving, split the peppers in half lengthwise and seed them. Scoop the quinoa mixture into the pepper halves. Garnish with parsley, if using.
Tips/TechniquesThe quinoa may be cooked up to 24 hours in advance and stored in the refrigerator.