Pesto, Quinoa, Veggies…Oh My!

by abbyannssweetdisposition

Happy Thursday!

Thank goodness I only have 4 more days of work before I am on summer vacation! Yes, my last week of summer is my vacation.  With my classes, work, and internship I feel like I really haven’t had any relaxing time! But my best mate from England comes next week and we have so many fun activities planned, it’ll be awesomeee! Today after a grueling interval running workout I decided to do some cooking! Although I’d rather be doing some baking, my waistline doesn’t agree with me on that one, we fight a alot. So today I made some homemade Pesto…you can call me Giada from now on, and then some delicious summer quinoa salad. I usually cook haphazardly throwing in whatever we have around so I’ll try and throw some measurements into the recipe, but I mean whatever works for you!


What you’ll need…

1/2 cup pine nuts

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

1/2 cup olive oil

5 cups (or so) of FRESH basil (yumyumyum)

GARLIC I probably did about 3 tablespoons but it’s totally up to you, let’s just say no vampires will be attacking me today

Salt & Pepper to taste

This is so easy, just throw everything, except the olive oil, into the food processor. Once, you’ve pulsed it all together a little, slowly add all of the olive oil and some salt n’ peppa. Taste the pesto and see if its garlicy, basily, or salty, or peppery enough for you and just add what you think you need. Mine came out pretty good, but it’s better after it’s been sitting for a while.  I think we might try and freeze some in ice cube trays so we can just pop them out of the freezer and use them when we need it, genius I know.

So now that I have all this pesto, what the crap am I going to do with it? I know I’m making a healthy quinoa summer salad. Again, I just used veggies we had around the house and you can use whatever you want!

ImageQUINOA. this is one of my favorite grains…doesn’t everyone have their favorite grains? Anyways, it’s packed with protein and goodness and is pretty neutral tasting so whatever you add to it, it usually will taste damn good.  For a while I was eating quinoa like 7 days a week, so I took a break and now we have rekindled our love affair. You cook quinoa like rice so whatever liquid you use just use 2 cups of that to 1 cup of quinoa. I like to use veggie stock instead of water, gives it a little more flavor.  You bring the water to a boil then let it simmer and cook, just like rice! Make sure it doesn’t get stuck to the bottom of the pan or burn…I’ve done that a few times.

What you’ll need (what I used)

a handful of fresh cherry tomatoes cut in half

one cucumber cut into tiny pieces (almost cut my finger off)

a bit of onion

I used some of my moms home canned green beans which were delish, but use what you want!

Once the quinoa is done cooking throw it in a big bowl with the veggies and mix it up.  I also made a little dressing to go with it, some olive oil, red wine vinegar, and lemon juice…Probably about 1 tbl olive oil, 1 tbl lemon juice and a 1/2 tbl red wine vinegar. Or more, I can’t remember. I poured that over this delicious salad and then did a couple tbl of my fresh pesto. It is pretttty darn good as it, but I think that quinoa salads are better after they’ve been sitting for a while so I threw that bad boy in the fridge.  I should go grab some feta to throw on top when I eat it for dinner tonight because that would also be bomb.


So I have my dinner made before noon, such a Mom move but whatever I have to work at the outdoor pool tonight and I like to make my co workers jealous with my delicious food while their chowing down on lunchables or pb&js. Alright I am off to go make lunch, which will probably involve pesto and cheese…seriously stay away from my mouth later, or neck…vampires, unless you are Eric or Bill!

Have a sweet day!