It isn't really, but by time you combine a small, savory grain (quinoa) with a tart, subtle dressing (lime juice, olive oil, salt) and toss greens, beans, and diced peppers in for kicks, you've got the same texture. This is at the top of my list for vegan summer fare. Pairs well with anything - here, I'd made some stuffed mushrooms with peppers, queso fresco, soy chorizo and some toasty cumin.
Quinoa Black Bean Salad
(adapted from this Epicurious recipe)
1.5 cups Quinoa, in this recipe I used red (unhulled)
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 cup fresh or frozen roasted corn
1.5 cups chopped cilantro
3 green onions, chopped
6 tablespoons lime or lemon juice (2 large, juicy limes worth)
1/3 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon cumin
1.5 teaspoon salt
Boil your quinoa in salted water for 10 minutes, then drain. In a colander, set it over a boiling pot of water, covered with a towel and lid, to steam, for 10 minutes (13 if using unhulled quinoa). Scoop into a bowl and stick it in the fridge to cool.
In a large bowl, toss the peppers, black beans, corn and cilantro. Add quinoa. Stir to combine. In a small bowl or measuring cup, mix lime juice, oil, salt and cumin together until incorporated, then pour over the quinoa salad while stirring. Mix thoroughly. Ta-da!
If served warm, you get more of the quinoa's nuttiness. If chilled, more tart lime. Either way, I could eat pounds of this stuff. And it's super good for ya!