Monday, December 31, 2012

Spring Fever & Deconstructed Guacamole Quinoa!

I officially have Spring Fever! It turns out that when you are stuck inside being sick when the buds are coming out on the trees, and the weather is breathtaking, you start to go a little crazy…….aaaand end up painting your fingernails neon pink with lots of sparkles:)

holding a rainbow in my hand:)
Well, if my eye-popping hue didn’t brighten my day, this sure did: I looked down and found that a rainbow was sitting in my hand! Of course, it was just the light reflecting through a crystal teardrop on our lamp, but I thought it was pretty amazing. God giving me a little something to smile about:)

succulent tile fish!
So for dinner tonight, I wanted to mimic the crisp and fresh springtime air in our food. Nothing screams “springtime” to me more than the bright, fresh flavors of Mexican food! So I decided to make Deconstructed Guacamole Quinoa with broiled Tile Fish! Correct. Decision.

so fresh and so healthy!
Here’s what you need:
1 cup quinoa cooked in 2 cups veg stock per package directions
2 handfuls cherry tomatoes, halved
1 red pepper, diced
1/4 red onion, finely minced
1 garlic clove, grated
1 avocado, diced
big bunch of cilantro, chopped
juice of a lime
1 green onion, sliced
5 black olives, sliced
In a bowl, place your diced avocado and toss it with some lime juice and salt. Place in the refrigerator. In another bowl, combine your tomatoes, pepper, onion, garlic, half of your cilantro, salt, and the juice of half a lime. Toss them together, and set aside.  In a little dish (I used a Pyrex measuring cup), combine the juice and zest of 1/2 a lime, 1/2 tsp EVOO, salt, and the sliced white and light green parts of the green onion. (Reserve the tops for garnish). When your quinoa finishes cooking, “fluff in” your tomato mixture, remaining cilantro, and lime/green onion sauce. Serve, topped with diced avocado, black olives, green onion, cilantro and tortilla chips as a garnish.

such bright colors and flavors!
With this fiesta of a forkful, I served broiled Tile Fish. We LOVE this fish.Lobsta Bakes’ wild, ocean-caught tile fish is just so flakey and tender. It has a delicate consistency and mild flavor. I broiled it for about 15 minutes in 1 tsp EVOO, salt, pepper, lemon zest, and juice. Wow. Yum!

deconstructed guacamole fun:)
This meal really hit the spot. It was light. It was fresh. It was unbelievably delicious. There were 3 things really working in its favor: 1) the textures, 2) the flavors, and 3) the beautiful colors! Lets start with the textures.  Quinoa is such a super food…not only because of its high nutrient content and complete protein status, but also because of its fantastic flavor and texture! It is deep and nutty, and pops in your mouth! It’s so fun to eat! That, with the crunchy peppers, chewy olives, and the juicy, bursting tomatoes, paired with the creamy, cool avocado makes it so enjoyable!

luscious and creamy avocado!
Next, the flavors! The first flavor that hits you is the bright *zing* from the lime, and then the fresh cilantro chimes in! The peppers are sweet, the tomatoes give a little sweet acidity, and the olives provide a little salty pop. This is all rounded out by bright and fresh avocado. A symphony for your palate.

packed with flavor and nutrition!
Finally, this dish is just aesthetically beautiful. The dark quinoa brings drama to the plate, highlighted by the bright red peppers, lemony green avocado, black olives, and the bright green cilantro! Talk about a plate to impress.
Lets hope spring fever settles in before my neon kick spreads to my hair!!! Juuuuuuust kidding ;)
A zester is essential to create this yummy fish. Here's the zester I use and love. Mine's orange:)

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