My dear friends Gill Sotu and Jerrica Escoto had a book release party at an art museum last week (yay, super talented friends!). During the party, my friend Jessica says “errmahgawd, try this quinoa stuff and figure out how to make it.”
So, I tried it.
And I made it.
With my own twist, of course.
My favorite part of this salad is the smoked corn. It’s like little pops of smoky delicious sweet bacon-y bits. I know everyone doesn’t have a stove top smoker (although I will say, smoked corn is enough of a reason to buy one), so you have a couple of options here, from most to least difficult:
a) If you’re feeling adventurous, click this link to see how to make a DIY smoker using equipment you probably already have in your kitchen.
b) roast the corn in the oven for 30 minutes at 350F.
c) use thawed frozen corn and skip the cooking completely
Or, you could buy a smoker. I have a Cameron’s Stovetop Smoker and IT’S AWESOME BTW. I received it as a gift – a delicious, delicious gift. #luckyme. I can’t even tell you about they glory that is a smoked chicken wing. And it makes the house smell like Christmas… all warm and fireplace-y lol. It won’t fill your house up with smoke, but it definitely smells of smoke. I love that smell so it’s fine with me. I also like the smell of chlorine bleach and blown out matches. Don’t judge me.
Not only is it vegetarian, it’s VEGAN friendly! Yay healthy things!
Smoked Corn, Red Quinoa and Black Bean Salad
makes 4 large servings, 6-8 appetizer sized servings
1 cup red quinoa
2 cups vegetable broth
2 – 15oz cans black beans, drained
1 1/2 cups corn, fresh and smoked/roasted (~ 2 ears fresh corn) or frozen then thawed
1 avocado, cut into 1/2 inch chunks
1 jalapeño, finely diced
1 small red onion, finely diced (~ 3/4 cup)
1/2 cup cilantro , chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
Cook quinoa according to package directions, replacing water with vegetable broth. I cooked my quinoa in a rice cooker with a 2:1 ratio of broth to quinoa. While quinoa is cooking, prepare the rest of the ingredients.
For the corn, it’s choose your own adventure time:
Use a stovetop smoker (buy it online or make it yourself). Place the corn, silk removed and husk on, in smoker for 30 minutes over 1 1/2-2 tbsp of light wood chips. I used apple wood chips. After smoking, let cool enough to handle, then shuck kernels off of the cob by running a knife down the length of the corn.
Place the corn, silk removed and husk on, directly on oven rack. Roast at 350F for 30 minutes.
Use frozen sweet corn. Defrost.
Once quinoa has cooked, combine with all remaining ingredients. Season with salt, pepper or additional lime juice if desired. Toss well and serve warm, room temperature or cold.
I love to eat this salad with these NutThins, which I’m totally obsessed with.