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Quinoa, kale, and calories

January 18, 2011

It’s no surprise that I love food a whole lot, but food and I have not always had the most healthy of relationships.  After lots and lots of exercising during my high school years, my activity level went down during my last year of high school and early college years and I picked up some rather unhealthy eating disorder type habits.  As part of my healing process, I’ve spent the last several years totally avoiding calorie counting or really paying much attention at all to what I put in my body (in terms of amount, not quality).

That being said, I joined a gym again and I’ve been trying to feel more healthy, which means loosing a tiny bit of weight.  Inspired by this post by Daily Garnish, I decided to spend a week or so counting calories and nutrients to figure out where I’m landing.  I don’t think it’s something I’d do long term, but it has been interesting to see what nutrients I’m lacking (and how many of my calories I drink–damn beer!).  I’ve mostly realized that I do not get near enough calcium since I’ve stopped eating most dairy.

Anyway, one of the nice things about the site that I’m using is that they let you easily enter recipes to figure out how much what you’ve cooked added up to.  Since I typed up this recipe for the site, I thought I’d also pass it along here.  I’ve been experimenting with quinoa and kale salads lately (separately), but I had both of them today, and I thought why not toss them together?  It’s nothing fancy, but it was filling, healthy, and yummy.

Crunchy Quinoa & Kale Salad

1/3 Cup toasted pecan pieces
9 pieces of sun-dried tomato (a small handful)
1 cup chopped raw celery
2 cups chopped raw kale
1 cup chopped onion
1 tsp olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon
1 Tbsp seasoned rice vinegar

1) Cook quinoa per instructions on box!
2) While quinoa is cooking, clean and chop celery and kale.
3) Chop onion and saute in olive oil until tender and browned.
4) When quniona is done, empty into a large mixing bowl and throw in sun-dried tomatoes, pecans, kale, and celery.
5) Squeeze juice from one lemon over the top and pour 1 tablespoon of seasoned rice vinegar into the bowl.
6) With your hands (or a spoon if you are fancy), mix everything together.  The kale will get slightly steamed by the hot quinoa, which makes it a bit softer and easier to eat.

In case you are wondering, if you divide this up into three portions (lunch sized for me), they have 412 calories per serving with a lot of protein and calcium.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. January 18, 2011 7:49 pm

    Looks delish! I might try it, minus the celery. Have you tried quinoa pasta? I just bought some and am trying to think what to use it with.

    • inoakpark permalink*
      January 18, 2011 8:13 pm

      I like quinoa pasta but its pretty flimsy once it cooks. I think it would be hard to use in pasta salad or something.

  2. Dad permalink
    January 19, 2011 10:22 pm

    I like paying attention to what I eat. I agree with the woman who wrote the Daily Garnish post — there’s no downside to educating yourself regarding how your eating habits serve you nutritionally.

    It’s an eye-opener how having more than a couple of beers or half a bottle of wine per day blows up your calorie count. It forces you to think a little about the cost of being immoderate. For me, it’s just a matter of sticking to moderation — avoiding the temptation to slip into compulsive self-denial.

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