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Thursday
Jul072011

GREEN BEAN + BLACK QUINOA SALAD

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I made a post out of what I had on hand! Congratulations, self! I have wandered from my grocery budget lately. I can pinch pennies on most things, but get me to a market and I feel like I am spending monopoly money. The same girl who holds on to gift cards that have under a fifty cent value... yeah. Lately, I've been coming home with pretty bottles of red wine from Trader Joes and the things is, I prefer white wines, I don't even like red wine! They're inexpensive bottles, but that's beside the point. So, of course I cried out of guilt, punished myself by drinking the red wine I don't even like (this is a confusing punishment, I'm aware), and am pretty sure I snapped out of the grocery addiction.

I tend to become a bit unmotivated when the weather warms up, and I'm certainly not turning on our ancient oven which heats up the entire upstairs. I have loads of green beans from my CSA basket, and admit they're not really a vegetable I would purchase otherwise. The green bean isn't known for being the most versatile ingredient - sort of akwardly lanky and reminiscent of your grandma's, creamy holiday casserole. But as a hater of waste and in my renewed frugalness, I dressed them up enough to be a dish I would bring to a backyard dinner party, or something I would take a bite of while passing the fridge for a snack.

The green beans stay crisp from a quick blanch, and the quinoa adds a bit of protein to fill you up. If you like your salads to be a little easier to eat, simply chop up those lanky beans to bite size pieces. Ignore the oven, have a tasty salad and it's the weekend again, party people.undefined

GREEN BEAN + BLACK QUINOA SALAD // Serves 4-6
I made my dressing with a lemon infused olive oil because I had some and I am obsessed with it, but it is not necessary. Use that if you have it, and if you'd like a bit of citrus, add a bit of fresh lemon zest when tossing everything together.

// Dressing //
1/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
3 Tbsp. White Balsamic
2 tsp. Agave Nectar / Honey
1 Clove Garlic
Handful of Basil Leaves
Pinch of Salt + Pepper

1/2 Cup Quinoa (black or red is pretty, but any color works)
1 lb. Green Beans, ends trimmed
2 Scallions/Green Onions
1/2 Cup Hazelnuts, toasted and skins removed, roughly choppedundefined

1. In a blender or food processor, whirl all of the dressing ingredients together. Taste for salt and pepper and set aside in the fridge.
2. Bring 1 Cup water to a boil and add the quinoa, turn the heat down to a simmer, cover and cook for about 20 minutes or until all the liquid is absorbed. Transfer to a large mixing bowl to cool.
3. Blanch or steam the green beans until just barely softened. Drain well. Add the drained green beans to the cooled quinoa. Thinly slice the scallions and add them, and half of the chopped hazelnuts to the bowl and toss with desired amount of the dressing. Finish the salad with a few grinds of fresh black pepper and the rest of the hazelnuts. Serve at room temperature or chill in the fridge. The leftovers hold up great. undefined

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Reader Comments (71)

I love green beans! They represent summer to me! I like the addition of quinoa and hazelnuts; such a lovely twist!

July 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterbianca

Kill me now because I'm already DYING, this is so beautiful.

Whoa. Chill Bev.

But really, death becomes me.

(I l.o.v.e. this)

July 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBev Weidner

This is a gorgeous and healthy salad. I also have started to add hazelnuts to my nut repertoire and loving it! :)

Second recipe I'm wanting to try this week with hazelnuts. It's a sign! I feel you on the grocery bill. Good grief. We are budgeting and it is by far my downfall, but I love good food and our vices could be much worse, no?

July 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLesley@homemadegrits

I always have a hard time figuring out what to do with fresh green beans to, aside from a side dish with some kind of light dressing. Really love what you did with them in this salad though! Quinoa and hazelnuts = my weakness.

July 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJacqui

I'm the same way at the grocery store! I can spend $120/week on 2 people! It's ridiculous. I'm in fridge-cleaning, not-buying-groceries-until-it's-absolutely-necessary mode, too.
Luckily, the garden is flourishing! I have a mason jar of quinoa and green beans to pick. I'm on it, thanks to you :)

July 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDessertForTwo

Oh my gosh, I am glad we are not the only couple with a habit of blowing our (already overly generous for two people) grocery budget! I know this is rationalizing, but I tell myself that spending more money on healthy food now will save us money on our healthcare bills and prescriptions later. :) I also tell myself that buying enough food to eat at home more often has to be less expensive than eating out... right?

Also, so funny that you used hazelnuts here! Because just a few weeks ago in France I had lightly cooked green beans drizzled with hazelnut oil and topped with parsley and toasted pinenuts. They were the best green beans I've ever had. (Shh, don't tell my mother-in-law.) But then again, if you drizzle anything in hazelnut oil it is probably the best ___ you've ever had.

This looks gorgeous, as usual. Thank you for the always inspiring and pretty posts!

Beautiful salad Sara!! And the best part is you made it from what you had on hand. Love those creations! Quinoa is always one of my staple pantry items. Funny cuz I just posted about not wanting to turn on the oven too! :P In trying to control our grocery bill I decided to attempt writing a meal plan, then do my shopping. One of the items on my list was your fennel slaw this week. Thanks for helping me out in my plan! :)

July 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterYumi

This kind of reminds me of good tabbouli--more greens less grains. It looks delicious!

July 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCamille

mmmmm... perfect timing. I have 5lbs of green beans I need to use!

July 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda Mae

All these look so very good and perfectly light for summmer.

July 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJoy

LOVE black quinoa. don't love green beans, but I see your game ;).

This looks really good. The perfect dish for this time of year. And I love that you made it from what you had - I have got out of the discipline of doing that lately, and often need to run to the shop at the last minute. Here's to foraging in our own kitchens!

July 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRuth

Green beans and quinoa is one of my favourite quick meals! I love the addition of hazelnuts in this version!

July 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMaria @ Scandifoodie

I love how the quinoa adds a little texture (and protein) to the dish! It's simplicity is so stunningly beautiful... and the fact that you did it all with things you had in your refrigerator... it really is an accomplishment. ;-)

Yum! This is going on my menu board... now.

July 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMollie

i am picturing you sitting the corner, facing the wall time-out style, chugging a bottle of wine with a painful grimace on your face. i hate red wine, but i wouldve done it with you, or at least held your hand while you endured your own punishment... im thinking of using your idea as a discipline technique when i go back to teaching... what do you think?

July 8, 2011 | Unregistered Commentercourtney

I have to agree with you about green beans not being a vegetable I'd personally purchase, but to try this salad out, I'll be making a stop at the market later today. Looks very fulfilling!

July 8, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterkamran siddiqi

My girls love green beans, but me, not so much. However, this looks so good. And the dressing sounds like it would be great in a summer salad. Adding it to my recipes to try. Perhaps with a glass of wine? ;)

July 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJen O

Yes please!!!! Beautiful Sara!

July 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterErin

Looks amazing!! I needed a change from my boring go-to quinoa salads - this looks original, beautiful (well, I'm sure my version will be less aesthetically impressive than yours but hey I'll make an attempt ;) and delicious! I can't seem to find black quinoa in Paris (why is that do you think? they eat duck liver and 800-year old cheese here but are afraid of a little black quinoa? :) but will try a white variety. Merci beauocup! Have a great summer (and looking forward to more Sprouted Kitchen recipes as I prepare for a summer in the USA -- last your your recipes fed my family and me well all summer so we can't wait for more! :)

July 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRebecca

It's funny you should write about this now, because I have been letting a little slack in my grocery budget too! And the past few days, I've been toying with whether or not I want to allow myself to feel guilty. I don't. In the long run, I think I won't remember how much money I spent on something unless it feels like a waste; I'll remember, instead, how much joy it brought me and the ones I feed :)
In the meantime, the best trick ever is to buy canned wild Alaskan salmon instead of fresh. I have saved an incredible amount of money, and while it will never taste the same, it gets the job done nutritionally. I love your honesty, Sara.

July 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

I had this bag of green beans from the farmers market and wanted to make a green bean salad. I thought which blog would have that -- I typed in sprouted kitchen and there it was -- no searching even! I also had leftover hazelnuts from some chocolate hazelnut butter I made yesterday! I was out of quinoa, but had some great sungold tomatoes left. Yes, I know quinoa and tomatoes have nothing in common, but I love cold green beans with tomatoes -- Delicious! This is going to be my new summer green bean salad (and I'll add the quinoa next time!) Thanks for coming to my rescue!

"à table !"

July 9, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterpierre

We just got some black quinoa yesterday on a whim. This will compliment it great.

July 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTender B.

oh this sounds like heaven for a healthy and quick summer meal. absolutly love it. hazelnuts here in Piedmont, Italy, are really top quality and I like them in all preparations!

July 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterValeria

I know everyone is saying it, but this looks good! I love the proportion of beans to quinoa, how the grains just cling to the slender green bodies of the veggies. Really. I am completely inspired. Thanks, I needed that today.

July 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda

Black quinoa looks super cool! I'll have an abundance of green beans in a few weeks, and this recipe is right up my alley. Perfect picnic food!

July 9, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterrenee@sweetsugarbean

This is the kind of thing I eat all summer long. I love using green beans when they are extra crisp like this, too, so much better than the mushy ones I had growing up. Will have to add this one to my no-cook summer meal rotation.

July 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

Wonderful summer dish and beautiful pictures! Thanks for sharing!

July 10, 2011 | Unregistered Commentermiri leigh

delicious! do you infuse the olive oil yourself? could you share the recipe?

July 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterEpicurea

I love how the quinoa coats the beans, it looks gorgeous!

July 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLiz

It took me years to finally enjoy green beans and now I often buy them to throw in salads or munch on during the day...we cant have quinoa but I am still going to try this with the dressing, beans and perhaps some greens (hehe..that rhymed). Thanks Sara!

July 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCoco

we seem to have a lot in common when it comes to neatness and such - when reading the first part of your post i couldn't help but think of myself! i, too, am very frugal with my money, yet i get sucked in by pretty things and then feel super guilty about it. i recently bought a wallet that cost $45. $45?! for a wallet?! but it was beautiful and i couldn't stop thinking of it for weeks so i finally bought it. but it's well-made so probably worth it in the long run. not that i NEEDED it, but still. anyway, i'm glad it's not just me :) oh, and while i love white better than red at the moment, i'd totally help you drink those bottles of wine :)

July 11, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterandrea

This is just perfect, and I'm going to remember it in a few weeks when I'm picking billions of green beans in the garden.

July 11, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterThe Rowdy Chowgirl

Those last two photos really sell this one for me. My garden, or rather my parent's garden, produced I don't know how many green beans each year. Will try this when we get our inevitable glut. Fantastic.

July 11, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNick

I'm a fellow fan of that beautiful quinoa - especially how it plays so nicely in salads. Another winner Sara!

July 11, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDana

I am feeling you on the market front - I too tend to spend more than I want to. It's almost because I'm spending it on healthy food and not clothes/handbags/meals out that it doesn't count. Thanks for a great way to use green beans. I always seem to have some in the fridge but rarely actually do something with them!

I know exactly what you mean about grocery shopping - me and my fiance turn into crazy spenders there. We always love to get new finds - need to remember to use up the goodies in our pantry in between buying though! :) Haven't had hazelnuts in a long time. Green beans in all dishes are my favorite - sounds like the perfect opportunity to have hazelnuts too!

July 13, 2011 | Unregistered Commentertiina

This is my absolute favorite website. It is the most beautiful eye candy online. Wonderful recipes and just gorgeous. THANK YOU!

July 14, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRobin

how gorgeous! I love quinoa and always looking for new recipes. Love that this is so simple!

July 16, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterjas

I just adore Quinoa...such a beautiful creation here!

July 17, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMagic of Spice

Looks good... you are like the next Heidi Swanson. Can't wait to see all you're holding back for you book!

July 17, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterbetterVita

Yes! I love green beans and don't even get me started on Quinoa!! Yummy!

July 17, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBrenda

Just wandered to this site, I must say I LOVE IT! Anyway from what Ive seen so far looks like very little meat, is this correct and I take it its for health benefits?

July 17, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterrobin

This looks so good! I can't bring myself to eat anything but cold salads in this extreme heat. I will have to put this one on my list!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterASHLEA

[...] egg salad, this shaved fennel salad, or this buttermilk farro salad. I bet it’d be great on Sara’s Green bean salad, or Deb’s Israeli salad. You get the [...]

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHomemade Celery Salt

I love green beans and they are just coming into season on the West Coast. This looks like another great salad to try!

Thanks.

ps: I can totally relate to the grocery addiction, I can never stick to what is on my shopping list, especially at the farmers markets.

July 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMelissa

Bizarre! I made something very similar to this a few nights ago!

http://bevcooks.com/2011/07/indian-spiced-yellow-wax-beans-with-black-quinoa/

Great stomachs eat alike.

July 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBev Weidner

i just love this website!

July 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLIVIA

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