The other day my son called me from college -once just to say hi while he was grocery shopping, and a second time to ask me how to cook broccoli. Can you imagine anything better?!
My kids didn’t always love their veggies. I remember a time, which seems like just yesterday, when this one in particular refused to eat anything that wasn’t beige. Plain pasta with just Parmesan cheese – no tomato sauce. White bread (I know 🙁 ) with peanut butter and fluff (don’t judge me). Chicken nuggets with white rice (OK -I don’t always keep only healthy food in the house).
When he was probably about 7 years old, I’d had enough, and I talked him into planting a vegetable garden with me. We rented a plot at a garden nursery nearby because every sunny patch of my own yard is too full of flowers. We’d go down in the late afternoon or after dinner and water, weed, fertilize and pick our crops. He saw how things grew from seedlings to actual things he could eat, and he was so amazed at the entire process and so proud of what he created that… you guessed it – he started to eat green beans, cucumbers, zucchini, peppers, and carrots. He tried tomatoes, but to this day, he still hates those.
And 13 years later – he’s buying his own broccoli. How proud am I of what I created? 🙂
This story has absolutely nothing to do with today’s recipe – except that food really does taste good if you grow it yourself, or you at least know where it came from – a farm not a factory. This Warm Zucchini and Quinoa Salad is actually made with probably one of the last batches of fresh summer zucchini, and I use it raw. I prefer it that way because it holds its shape and a little bit of crunch. But the poblano peppers, corn, and of course the quinoa is cooked and the entire thing can be served warm, room temperature, or cold if you prefer.
Don’t you think this is THE BEST way to savor the last few weeks of zucchini and corn from the farmers market?
- 2 small zucchini ends trimmed
- Kosher salt
- 2 ears corn on the cob
- 1 medium poblano pepper cut in half and seeded
- 1 cup cooked quinoa
- 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes halved
- 4-5 scallions chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro minced
- juice of 2 limes about 4 tablespoons
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- salt and pepper
- Slice zucchini into quarters lengthwise and trim away any seedy flesh. Cut each quarter into small 1/2 inch pieces. Place cut zucchini in a colander, sprinkle with about 1/2 teaspoon salt, and set over a sink for at least 15 minutes so zucchini can release some moisture.
- Grill corn and poblano pepper until lightly charred. Remove from grill and let cool slightly
- Pat zucchini dry with a paper towel, and place it in a large mixing bowl.
- Cut kernels from corn, and cut poblano into 1/2-inch pieces.
- Add corn, poblano pepper, cooked quinoa, tomatoes, scallions and cilantro to the zucchini and toss well to combine.
- Add dressing about 30 minutes before serving, and toss well to combine.
- Serve warm, room temperature or refrigerated.
Do you have picky eaters in your house, or is everyone as adventurous as you?