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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Sandwich Series: Quinoa Filled Rice Paper with Pistachio Citrus Vinaigrette

When you hear the word sandwich, does your brain immediately conjure up slices of meat and cheese between two slabs of bread? Welcome to the modern sandwich age where bread, meat and cheese are not required

But what does that leave you with, you ask? For starters, how about wrapping a quinoa salad with see-through rice paper. It's a great change from a salad, delicious and healthy! The quinoa is loaded with protein and the addition of fresh spinach rounds out the nutritional value.

To really punch it up, the pistachio citrus vinaigrette takes advantage of pistachio oil with its deep complex flavor derived from pistachio nuts. Plus this is another Strange Ingredient sent by great friends of the Fat and Happy blog!

Take a walk on the wild side of sandwiches with a fat and happy quinoa filled rice paper wrap. Who knows where this crazy new-age inspiration might lead you after lunch!

Tips and techniques:  Easily substituting rice in place of the quinoa for a simple change in flavor and textures.

Sandwich Series:  Quinoa Filled Rice Paper with Pistachio Citrus Vinaigrette

3 cups cooked quinoa
1 tomato
1 apple
1 small yellow pepper
4 radishes
1/2 cup fresh parsley
2 celery stalks
2 tablespoons sunflower seeds
salt and pepper

Pistachio Citrus Vinaigrette

zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1 lemon
2 Tbls grape seed oil
3 Tbls pistachio oil
1 Tbls sugar
salt and pepper

For the sandwich

4 Rice papers
2 cups fresh spinach (1/4 cup per sandwich)

Cook the quinoa according to package directions. While that is cooking, dice up the vegetables, place in a large bowl and add the quinoa when it is ready.

Whisk together the vinaigrette, add salt and pepper to taste, you'll need about a teaspoon of each. Drizzle a tablespoon of the dressing over the spinach along with a pinch of salt and pepper and toss. Pour the remaining dressing over the quinoa mixture and toss well.

Fill a large, shallow plate with warm water. dip the rice paper in the warm water to soften it.  Place a layer of spinach on the middle third of the rice paper. Add one cup of the quinoa mixture. Slowly begin to roll the paper, folding in the edges. Remoisten the final edge to hold the paper together if needed. Slice in half and enjoy.

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