Last Saturday, some caring folks from Saint Joseph’s Hospital’s Heart Center for Women held a wonderful event at Saint Joseph’s Mercy Services downtown. Free cardiac screening and lots of great information for participants – including yoga, nutritional counseling, a fun Zumba class and a cooking class from yours truly. I am passing on a recipe from the class for an easy and power-nutrient-packed summer dish that is easy to fix, and the whole family will enjoy. Try adding chopped zucchini or yellow squash during the summer when it is plentiful, or even a couple of roasted red peppers for a little zing. The Heart Center for Women located in Dunwoody provides an incredible array of services for screening and education about our hearts. You can check it out at Summer Quinoa with Vegetables1 (15 oz) Can Low Salt Chickpeas, Rinsed 3 TB Fresh Lemon Juice 3 TB Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Divided 3 Large Garlic Cloves, Minced 1 TB Cumin Seeds 2 Tsp Turmeric, divided 2 Tsp Smoked Sweet Paprika, Divided 2 Cups Water 1 Cup *Quinoa, Rinsed and Drained 2 Tsp Ground Cumin 2 Tomatoes, Seeded and Chopped Julienned 4 Green Onions, Thinly Sliced ¼ Cup Chopped Fresh Parsley Sea Salt and Black Pepper Step One Combine chickpeas and lemon juice. Add 2 TB olive oil, stir in the garlic. Let the mixture marinate for at least 15 minutes. Step Two Heat 1 TB olive oil in a medium saucepan. Add cumin seeds, 1 Tsp turmeric, 1 Tsp paprika and stir until fragrant – 2-3 minutes. Add 2 cups of water, and the quinoa Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until quinoa is done – about 15 – 20 minutes. Step Three Stir in the ground cumin, the remaining turmeric, and paprika to the quinoa. Add the tomatoes, green onions, parsley and the chickpea mixture. Taste for salt and pepper and serve. FAST FOOD FACT Quinoa (Keen-wah), tonight. Revered by the Incas as the “mother grain” it is actually a seed from the Goosefoot plant. Sold in the U.S. only since the mid-eighties, it has a mild nutty flavor that is a great background for strong bold flavors – like smoked paprika, lemon juice and garlic. Try substituting Quinoa for Couscous in some of your recipes!

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